Money Management

A recently resettled refugee learning how to buy a subway ticket

Refugees arrive in the United States with a range of experiences in money management. During their initial resettlement period they experience many firsts in money management, often at an accelerated rate. A key component of being successful requires that refugees not only become self-sufficient by finding employment as soon as possible, but that they develop knowledge, attitudes, and skills that will allow them to navigate the complex financial system in the United States.

Download Lesson Plan
  • For initial financial success, refugees should understand key concepts, such as essential needs, banking, budgeting, credit, and debt.
  • Refugees should begin to develop a sense of security and trust in utilizing financial institutions and other financial resources available in the United States.
  • Refugees’ financial situations will change with time and there are steps early in their resettlement experience that they can take to ensure a positive financial future.
  • The financial system in the United States is complex and will take time to navigate, so refugees should continue to develop their skills and knowledge after their initial resettlement period.

After this lesson, refugees will be able to:

  • Define the following key concepts and identify their importance in money management: essential needs, banking, budgeting, credit, and debt.
  • Identify their attitudes and beliefs toward money management and how their attitudes and beliefs could influence their resettlement in the United States.
  • Identify some of the key financial milestones refugees will experience in the United States and how these key financial milestones can contribute to a positive financial future.
  • Scenarios (as selected)
  • Money Management fact sheet (1 per participant) (optional) or podcast (optional)
  • Card Sort vocabulary words and definitions (as selected)
  • Financial Milestones Game Cards (as selected)
  • Flip-chart
  • Post-it notes
  • Markers