Consumer Education

We are already in the swing of things with our consumer education efforts going ahead full steam. The first few weeks of this year were mostly spent carving the path for this year and we have a jam packed March with many Double Impact (DI) sessions planned for the month. The fact that March is Consumer Month in South Africa, makes it even more apt that we will be having an added drive in engaging consumers during this time.

International Consumer Day will be celebrated on 15 March, with the theme being focusing on consumers’ rights to healthy food.

Our consumer outreach activities for 2014 largely focussed on the credit provider tailored training, Double Impact. A total of 63 sessions were conducted throughout the year and we received rave feedback from credit provider staff and management alike on the difference it made to those who had attended the training.

We still continue to engage with consumers at their places of employment and other gatherings through our workshops. Last year, a total of 34 outreach activities were conducted in partnership with various stakeholders and ordinary community members.

Our efforts in the media still remain a very important aspect when it comes to reaching out to consumers. Last year our Advertising Value Equivalent (AVE) amounted to R32 million! This is by far the highest AVE value recorded in the history of the Credit Ombud’s office. We participated in 198 radio and television interviews, featured in 159 magazine and newspaper articles and in 115 online articles.

The combined effect of our outreach and consumer education activities, coupled with our media activities, went a long way in assisting consumers and highlighting the work our office has done in the past 10 years. We will certainly continue to use these mediums to make a lasting difference in the lives of South African consumers in the coming 10 years.