National Traveller MABS is a leading advocate for the financial inclusion of Travellers in Ireland.

National Traveller MABS

  1. Works to ensure access to financial services for the Traveller community
  2. Builds capacity within the Traveller Community in Ireland to access legal and affordable saving and credit.

Core elements of our work include:

  • Promoting  a culture of saving within the Traveller community
  • Promoting relationships between Travellers/ Travellers organisations and financial institutions locally

In 2015, National Traveller MABS intends to focus on promoting a culture of saving among Traveller Youth. We aim to achieve this by initiating a programme we have called Three Small Changes. The programme will see a number of young Travellers join and save in a credit union. Their experience will then be recorded on a short film which will be used to promote saving among their peers. In the film participants will identify 3 small changes they each made which encouraged them to join the credit union and ensured their success in saving. We also plan to record the experience of participating credit unions.

Focusing on Travellers

Young Travellers, like all young people have dreams and hopes. Traveller Youth tend to grow up more quickly than then majority population, getting married and starting families at a young age. Therefore there is a greater need for Young Travellers to begin saving earlier. However traditionally within the community there has not been a culture of saving in financial institutions. National Traveller MABS would like to change this.

We hope that by using peer promotion- (i.e. young Travellers showing other young Travellers), the Three small changes programme will-

  • Raise awareness of the role and  benefits of the credit union among young Travellers
  • Promote a culture of saving among Young Travellers

In The Three Small Changes programme, National Traveller MABS plans to work with a group of young Travellers over a period of time, supporting them to both join and save in their local credit union, thereby helping them to gain life skills around financial planning.

We want to use this programme to demonstrate to other young Travellers the benefits of saving and financial planning.

National Traveller MABS will develop communications a short film and printed material  to show the programme in action how it began, what worked, what was hard, how obstacles and setbacks were overcome.

Additionally the participating credit union would identify 3 things they did which they feel helped in achieving the overall goal of encouraging young people to save.

National Traveller MABS will use the film and related printed material (e.g. support posters etc.)– to show the benefits of both saving and membership of the credit union. The promotional material will be used with Traveller and youth groups only to promote the credit union and a culture of saving .

Below is the intended schedule of events.A timeline is yet to be agreed

Young Travellers Saving in the Credit Union

  1. Working with a Youth project,  participating youth identify a particular goal that they wish to achieve. They agree a savings plan in the CU to help them achieve this over a specific amount of time – which they can agree on. They start the savings plan.
  2. As well as having a savings scheme for themselves, the small group agree to  participate in communications about the project – i.e. they will act as champions of the project, telling their story on film (and/or audio or print).
  3. NTMABS, the youth and a member of the CU meet to agree how they will work together on this project, including the timeline, the expectations, the ‘3 small changes’ everyone will make.
  4. NTMABS will put in place – through the youth service/group a way to support the young people in the project, linking in along the way as required.
  5. When the scheme has started, a record of the process will be made  – i.e. a film with the young people/Credit Union/NTMAB explaining the scheme. This will involve:  Agreeing the most appropriate communication channels. Working on the scripts/key messages together with the young people and CU involved

  6. Producing the communications – likely to be short video (4 mins) and posters or other forms of printed material

  7. Launch promotional material.

If you would like to know more about this programme please contact National Traveller MABS Community Education Worker Dermot Sreenan on  0761 07 2230.

Published: 29 April 2015