'More kids could match Molly-Mae’s success if we taught financial literacy'

Irish Mirror   15/01/2022 19:43

Molly-Mae Hague first came to public attention as runner-up on the fifth series of Love Island – and since then has taken social media by storm.

She’s young – just 22 – popular, beautiful, hardworking, successful and a role model for young women.

After a recent podcast, however, she was called out for being “tone deaf” when implying that those less fortunate than herself in their upbringing only had themselves to blame for their lack of financial stability, saying: “We all have the same 24 hours in a day.”

Ouch! I can see why some people took offence. She may be a grafter, but others work just as hard and still face barriers to success.

To be fair to her, I believe her intentions were meant to be motivational, rather than offensive.

But the whole matter did make me think about money and its importance in our lives – the opportunities and comfort it can bring and how you need to understand it to make it work for you.

As a parent, I want to make sure I teach my children “financial literacy” – something I feel is really missing from our education system and society as a whole.

To understand how to be savvy with money, how to invest wisely and to know about the tools available to help you – all these things are crucial to help close the wealth inequality gap.

It’s not always about going to the best schools that will determine your financial success.

It’s about understanding how to get the best return from money regardless of the job you do.

I’m in the middle of recording a business podcast, Backing Brilliant Business, and each week I have the pleasure of interviewing successful people in their field.

One of my subjects was Iona Bain, who founded the pioneering Young Money Blog in 2011 and has since become the UK’s go-to voice on young personal finance.

She’s written a book called Own It, which she says she wrote for the younger generation so that they can “use their amazing potential to give the world of money the kick up the bum it needs”.

I put it to her that for many young people, life is particularly tough right now what with low wages, high house prices, next to zero reward for saving and the catastrophic fallout from Covid.

But the millennial money expert told me that what was needed was a debunking of the notion that investing is just for city boys in shiny shoes.

She wants to prove with her book that anyone can invest if armed with the right know-ledge and she makes the case for investing even (or especially) in these uncertain times.

Molly-Mae has done very well for herself and perhaps if we parents educated ourselves more about money, we might give our kids the tools to boost their own prosperity.

If financial literacy is instilled in them from a young age, they too have a chance of matching Molly-Mae’s success.

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