francais            March 2011 - Issue No. 6

       Canadian Centre for Financial Literacy


 A division of


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Welcome to our spring 2011 newsletter. The Canadian Centre for Financial Literacy (CCFL) is a division of SEDI, a charitable nonprofit organization. The CCFL brings together the public, private and nonprofit sectors to expand opportunities for low-income Canadians to increase their financial literacy.

We are very excited to share the latest news on financial literacy and highlight the work of the Canadian Centre for Financial Literacy and our partners over the past few months. We remain committed to building and strengthening the financial knowledge, skills, and confidence of our community partners and the people they serve. Please forward this newsletter to your contacts.



Casey Cosgrove
Director, Canadian Centre for Financial Literacy


What's new



Task Force on Financial Literacy hands recommendations to Minister of Finance

On February 9, 2011, the national Task Force on Financial Literacy presented its report to Minister of Finance Jim Flaherty. The 30 recommendations call for urgent action on a national strategy to strengthen Canadians’ financial literacy. The Task Force’s report included key recommendations proposed by SEDI such as:

  • Investing in the capacity of the voluntary sector, including not-for-profit and community groups, to offer financial literacy programs to vulnerable populations, low-income earners and persons at-risk.
  • Linking financial literacy information and supports to government programs that provide opportunities for financial planning and investing such as the Registered Retirement Savings Plan, the Registered Disability Savings Plan and the Canada Learning Bond.
  • Working with the private sector to bring personal finance training to the workplace.

To read the report of the Task Force, visit




  Donald Stewart shares insights on a financial literacy strategy for Canada

On February 10, Donald Stewart, Chair of Canada’s Task Force on Financial Literacy and CEO of Sun Life Financial, presented Canada’s first ever national strategy on financial literacy at the Economic Club of Canada in Toronto. CCFL staff attended the event and learned more about how the not-for-profit sector can play an important role in helping low-income Canadians to build their knowledge, skills and confidence in financial matters.


SEDI Awards w
inners: (left to right)
Benjamin Kwofie, Brian Smith, John MacDonald


SEDI Awards: A celebration of resilience and a tribute to Peter Nares

On November 3, 2010, at the Arcadian Court in Toronto, the 5th SEDI Awards were hosted by CBC’s Suhana Meharchand, CTV’s Pat Foran, Dragons’ Den Arlene Dickinson with keynote speaker Ed Clark, President and CEO of TD Bank Group. The fundraiser and gala dinner recognizes people who have overcome poverty with the help of programs developed by SEDI and/or its community partners in the areas of financial literacy, saving and asset building, and entrepreneurship. The event was a great success and the true stars of the evening were the three award winners. Click here to read their remarkable stories.

In addition, a heartwarming tribute was paid to SEDI founder, Peter Nares, for the far-reaching impact his work in socio-economic development has had in Canada and internationally.



Peter Nares, SEDI Founder



FCAC-OECD conference on financial literacy

The date has been set! The Financial Consumer Agency of Canada (FCAC) and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) will co-host “Partnering to turn financial literacy into action” on May 26-27, 2011, in Toronto. The one-and-half day global conference seeks to advance the dialogue on financial education in the Canadian and international arenas. Please note that the conference is by invitation only. Presentation materials from the various conference speakers will be available on the FCAC’s website after the conference.


Highlights from the field


Bill Liggens, Ontario March of Dimes


Profile on program facilitator Bill Liggens of the Ontario March of Dimes

The CCFL depends on the expertise and dedication of the facilitators it trains across the country. People like Bill Liggens of the Ontario March of Dimes. Since attending a CCFL facilitator training in November 2010 at the Thunder Bay Counselling Centre, Bill has conducted several financial literacy workshops for Anishinabe men and people with disabilities. Recently, he partnered with one of his fellow trainees from Lutheran Community Care to deliver the CCFL’s financial literacy curriculum to people with developmental disabilities.

“I am not new to financial literacy, having worked in a bank for many years, but I like the accessibility and interactivity of the CCFL's curriculum,” says Bill, who is especially tuned into the needs and challenges of his clients as he is vision-impaired.

The CCFL continues to rely on the commitment and dedication of facilitators like Bill and all our community partners who work tirelessly to bring financial literacy to at-risk and low-income persons across Canada. Thank you to Bill for his hard work and dedication!


Becky Kilabuk, Qikiqtani Inuit Association (QIA), and Jennifer Soucie, Legislative Assembly of Nunavut


CCFL goes to Iqaluit

In December, the CCFL finished its 10th facilitator training session for the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada (FCAC) project The City. Our trainer Shari Grayson traveled to the far north to visit the Qikiqtani Inuit Association (QIA). The QIA has a youth department that consults with local young people to develop and deliver programs for youth. The newly trained coordinators plan to begin delivering The City to youth in Iqaluit soon.

For more information on The City, click here.


Partner with us



Opportunities to team up with the CCFL

The CCFL continues to seek community organizations across Canada interested in receiving training from the CCFL to build their capacity to deliver financial literacy workshops to their clients. We are particularly interested in working with community organizations in Eastern Canada, Saskatchewan and Manitoba, and with Aboriginal groups countrywide. To bring the CCFL to your community, please fill out the expression of interest available here and a CCFL staff member will follow up with you shortly.




Laura Watts, SEDI CEO


New CEO: SEDI welcomes Laura Watts

On February 1, 2011, SEDI welcomed Laura Watts as its new Chief Executive Officer. Laura succeeds outgoing SEDI head and founder Peter Nares, who will be retiring after leading the organization for 25 years.

Prior to joining SEDI, Laura was National Director and Staff Lawyer at the Canadian Centre for Elder Law and Director of Legal Programming and Strategic Development at the BC Centre for Elder Advocacy and Support. “Laura's proven track record leading an innovative national organization, her focus on building exceptional partnerships, and her ability to mobilize strategic policy change, uniquely qualify her to lead SEDI. We could not have found a better successor to Peter,” said Rebecca Finlay, Chair of SEDI’s Board of Directors.



Update on the TD Financial Literacy Grant Fund

The TD Financial Literacy Grant Fund, co-founded with SEDI, recently completed its second round of submissions. Once again, the Fund received a large number of applications from across the country. Results from this round will be announced in the spring.

Thank you to those who submitted an application for grants. Stay tuned for the next call for submissions in the summer of 2011. For more information, please visit


If you would like to share success stories and information on events related to the work your organization is doing in the area of financial literacy, please contact
Luciana Tuzino at





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Contact Us


Canadian Centre for Financial Literacy
1110 Finch Avenue West, Suite 406
North York, Ontario M3J 2T2
Tel: 416-665-2828