Bayad, DepEd raise alarms in savings drop among Filipinos

PHILIPPINES – Based on the 2021 Financial Inclusion Survey by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, the number of Filipino adults without savings increased to 63% from 47% in 2019, partly attributed to the global health crisis that may have reduced household income or increased medical expenses.

The BSP added that the percentage of savers significantly declined, particularly among adults in the National Capital Region, South Luzon, and Visayas regions. “The lower incidence of savings in 2021 was recorded across geographical areas except in Mindanao, which registered an increase and surpassed all areas,” the report said.

It is in this light that Bayad, formerly known as Bayad Center — the pioneer and industry-leader in bill payments, and the Department of Education (DepEd), advocating a financial mindset that everything must be economically and sufficiently enough, launched a comprehensive school program aptly called “Bayad: Sapat Dapat”. This advocacy reinforces the importance of financial literacy and management in the formation years of Filipino students.

Culminating the 5-year program was the recently concluded Sapat Dapat Quizbee on Financial Literacy, where majority of the secondary public and private schools in all divisions of Region 7 and Region 4A participated. The eliminations started last February 2022, with remaining 45 students competing for the finals, held virtually last September 8, 2022 under the supervision of DepEd, Bayad, and Marylindbert International, Inc.

After a series of case studies and questions on financial management, savings, and priority-setting, the City of Bogo Science and Arts Academy from Bogo Cebu emerged as this year’s Quizbee Champion, represented by its Grade 9 student, Angel L. Mollona and coach Natasha Jane Y. Estrera.

Angel shares “Ang pag-apil sa Sapat Dapat Quiz Bee sa Financial Literacy magahatag sa atong mga estudyante og maayong pagsabot sa sukaranang mga prinsipyo ug ideya kon unsaon pagdumala sa kuwarta sa wais nga pamaagi, ug sa samang higayon naga-andam kanato alang sa umaabot diin kini nga mga leksyon magamit kanato sa pagtukod ug kaugalingong pamilya ug karera.” (“Participating in the Sapat Dapat Quiz Bee on Financial Literacy gives us students a good grasp on basic principles and ideas on how to manage our money wisely, and at the same time prepares us for a future where these lessons can be applied when we build our own families and career.”)

Joining Angel in the roster of financial literacy champions are 2nd place winner – Maria Theofannie P. Alviola of Ramon Teves Pastor Memorial Dumaguete Science High School, 3rd place winner – Marcus L. Cionello Jr. of Mabolo National High School, 4th place winner – Ivan C. Bunaos of Babag National High School, and 5th place winner – Mariel Miculob of Tabalong National High School.

Cebu City Education Program Supervisor and School Governance Operations Division OIC Chief, Lyra L. Illaga shares, “We are grateful for Bayad and Marylindbert International for inviting us to be a part of the Sapat Dapat Comprehensive School Program Financial Literacy Quiz Bee. We are looking forward for a continuous collaboration as we open more doors in the development of our learners. Essentially, financial education is key in attaining youth empowerment and economic well-being, para sa bata para sa bayan.”

Bayad and DepEd’s Sapat Dapat Comprehensive School Program is on its 3rd year of molding future financial leaders in the Grades 9 to 12 students of 40 adopted schools in Regions 7 and 4A.

“We envision the Sapat Dapat program as a tool that will equip our students with the proper knowledge on budgeting and money matters, as these will significantly help in their financial decisions later on. By teaching both children and adults the value of financial literacy, we become instrumental in empowering Filipinos and bringing the nation’s financial awareness to the next level. This is the bigger picture. This is what we stand for,” shares Mr. Wendell P. Labre, Bayad’s AVP and Head for Corporate Branding & Marketing Services.

Bayad Chief Commercial and Marketing Officer, Dennis S. Gatuslao added, “We at Bayad recognize the role of the youth as catalysts for our economic resiliency. We will continue to strengthen our partnership with the Department of Education as we aim to broaden the provision of relevant and inclusive financial education. “

Bayad President and CEO, Lawrence Y. Ferrer also shared, “All of our efforts in Bayad are directed towards elevating the standard of living of our kababayans. We continue to push forward our cause through the Sapat Dapat Comprehensive School Program, understanding that our youth are the key drivers in nurturing a sound financial culture. We are thankful to the Department of Education for giving us the opportunity to carry on this initiative and give back to the communities that we serve.”