Money Advice and Budgeting - 2020 and Beyond
MABS National Conference 2019
Over 230 delegates attended the Money Advice and Budgeting Conference in Croke Park this week. The conference provided an opportunity to network, learn and prepare for the future of a service that continues to respond to the needs of clients
A number of high-profile keynote speakers gave presentations. Among them were Michael Naughton, Chief Executive, Insolvency Service of Ireland, Brian Hayes, Chief Executive, Banking Payments Federation of Ireland, Ed Sibley, Deputy Governor, Central Bank of Ireland and Sandy Madar, President, European Consumer Debt Network. Topics ranged from customer focus in the banking sector to debt advice with a European perspective to “whistleblowing” and the fact that mortgage arrears remains a “serious problem” in Ireland more than a decade after the financial crash.
The Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection, Regina Doherty TD addressed delegates and thanked all those present for their hard work and commitment. She singled out the empathy coupled with professionalism that MABS staff offer all their clients.
A series of eight workshops on themes ranging from ‘Financial Inclusion and Education’ to ‘Illegal Moneylending’ and ‘Debt and Addictions’ took place in the afternoon. Speakers included Emma Kavanagh, Clinical Services Manager, Rutland Centre, Siobhan Nunn, Principal Social Worker, HSE and Tricia Keilthy, Head of Social Justice and Policy, St Vincent de Paul.
Staff from North Dublin MABS Swords office gave a powerful video message that made it clear just how important the work of the service is for so many people. The ripple effect of MABS’s work – not just for clients but for their families and friends in the wider community is enormous. Karl Cronin, Regional Manager, North Connacht and Ulster MABS said: “MABS is a beacon of light in times of financial distress and despair. You should be proud of your work and what MABS has achieved over the past 28 years.”
David Gillick, former Olympian and author and winner of Celebrity Masterchef Ireland gave a very uplifting presentation and reminded everyone present that while caring and supporting others is important, self-care is equally important for a balanced approach to life.
Angela Black, Chief Executive closed the conference by summing up the contribution of both the speakers and the organising committee. She thanked all the MABS staff and Board delegates both attending and those back holding the fort in MABS offices nationwide. “Because of you and your work, thousands of families are better off financially, socially and emotionally. Together we will future proof the network and solidify the reputation of MABS as a pillar of information, support and money advice in the community in the 21st century”.
A short video highlighting why the staff of MABS do what they do was also premiered on the day and can be viewed below.