Australian students tackling cost-of-living crisis and financial education recognised in FoF awards
Young Change Agents’ Future of Finance Challenge winners revealed
Sydney, Australia, 3rd August 2023 – Young Change Agents, an Australian education not-for-profit, has announced the winners of its national Future of Finance Youth Design Challenge, with 9 groups of students aged 10-18 recognised for their efforts to help young people navigate the cost-of-living crisis, improve financial literacy, gamify finance, and help people with mental health challenges tied to personal finances.
The Future of Finance Youth Design Challenge empowers young people to consider the biggest financial challenges facing young people, and develop products/applications to fix them. Young Change Agents teamed up with Fintech Australia, Finder, Airtree, Flair and Zip Co on the judging panel to discover the next generation of fintech entrepreneurs. Winners include:
- JobJrny – A first job app for young people, including locations of shops that are currently hiring, resume templates, reviews, information and interview prep
- Famnomics – A family card game that helps families talk about money and empowers parents to teach their kids about basic economic ideas that will help them now and later in life
- Piggy Heist – An app that engages young people aged 18-30 to compete with friends and family to reach their money saving goals. It also includes educational and informational videos about savings and banking tips
The winners will receive prizes to help them develop their ideas further, including an invitation to a Youth Incubator program and travel scholarships for the senior category. This will enable the winners to bring their product to life and pursue a career in fintech/start their own business.
STEM and finance are male-dominated sectors concentrated in big cities such as Sydney and Melbourne. A goal of the campaign was therefore to encourage more girls and students in regional areas to consider a career in STEM/finance, who may not have considered doing so before. The winners include students from South Australia, Victoria, Queensland and New South Wales, and more than three quarters of finalists were female.
“The cost-of-living crisis has laid bare the connection between financial stability and mental well-being,” said Young Change Agents CEO, Margaret O’Brien. “Finance is an issue that deeply impacts young people, and this program was launched to help them reframe the financial problems they see in their communities as challenges that they can help solve. We challenged Australian students to answer the question ‘How might we see money differently?’ and they have responded with a remarkable array of products, apps, games, and ideas. I hope the process will inspire the winners to go on to do great things in their careers and their communities.”
“It was amazing to see so many young people passionate about solving real world problems, especially those specific to their demographic and their unique challenges. We can’t wait to see how the projects will look after the incubator program.” shared Tori Rudolph, the Strategic Partnerships manager at Fintech Australia.
Jess Walker, Community and Programs Manager at Airtree, added, “I particularly loved the ideas that really thought through the problem, and were specific about who their audience was. I can’t wait to see you all in 10 years’ time when you pitch to a VC like Airtree.”