I am thankful to the Lord for giving me hardworking and responsible parents. I couldn’t remember a time that I was in lack. I believe that the first experience of every child in handling their own finances start when they discover how their parents or elders handle their own. The way the latter handle money provides a kind of blueprint to the children until the time that they’ll do it on their own. My knowledge of my parents being hard workers and responsible managers of money became some sort of an invisible guide that became my source of help whenever I need to make financial decisions.
Though I don’t consider myself a real spendthrift, I wasn’t also a saver. This, I believe, is what’s brilliant about Cha-Ching. It laid out everything that happens to money, which can be understood by an ordinary child. Earn. Save. Spend. Donate. When I was a child, I only know about receiving and spending. I didn’t know that saving must be in between that. I didn’t know that I can actually set a goal and stick to it so that I’ll be able to have extra cash whenever I need it. I also didn’t realize that even as a child, I can earn too and contribute to my disposable income. Also, I didn’t realize that I can reduce my spending so that I will have more savings. All of these concepts are explained wonderfully through Cha-Ching. What’s more beautiful about the program is that it encourages the children to think about others. One’s money doesn’t just go to one’s self. This is why “Donate” is also part of the four things that happen to money.
Honestly, I can definitely relate to all the characters in Cha-Ching. I have become a meticulous money manager like Prudence. I have become careless spender like Bobby. I am now a young entrepreneur like Justin. I know the value of giving too like Charity. I have experienced working hard and saving a lot like Zul. I have become a spendthrift too like Pepper. But in my life right now, I think that I am more of Prudence, Zul and Charity by choice. I chose to become a combination of a meticulous money manager like Prudence, young entrepreneur like Justin and generous Charity. I actually have a special spot for Prudence inside me. I used to keep an Excel file in my computer that helps me allocate my income for all the expenses that I have so when payday comes, I already know what to do. I love the detailed work of allocating and computing and saving that Prudence teaches kids to do.
I was very fortunate to be given a chance to attend the Cha-Ching event organized by Pru Life UK. Some of the notable speakers who attended the event include Dr. Alice Wilder and Ms. Belle Tiongco. Dr. Alice Wilder is the co-creator and executive producer of Cha-Ching. Ms. Belle Tiongco, on the other hand, is Pru Life UK’s Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer.
I truly enjoyed the talks of the speakers. Dr. Wilder said that as a child, she didn’t like school. She found it boring and monotonous. She became an educational psychologist when she had the chance to work with children. She is a proponent of the belief that “the only way to understand what children are capable of doing, what appeals to them and what they know is to ask them”. I couldn’t agree more. When I found out that she is also the person behind Blue’s Clues, I know that Cha-Ching will also be very successful.
Ms. Tiongco on the other hand oriented us on the legworks and all the nitty-gritty’s involved in making Cha-Ching successful as a campaign. “We are partnering with elementary schools to spread the awareness about Cha-Ching and we are training qualified teachers to enforce the learning of the students from the program,” she said. As a marketer by profession, I know that talking to elementary schools and partnering with them is not a small feat. You only do this if you really are serious about a campaign. Because of what they’re doing, I was placed under the impression that Cha-Ching is very very serious in teaching the children financial literacy. It’s more than just a cartoon program aired in Cartoon Network.
You can watch my favorite Cha-Ching episode below.