Episode #82 “Teaching Kids How To Think, Before They Buy”

With Karen Holland | Founder of GiftingSense.org | Social Entrepreneur |


Karen is the Founder of Gifting Sense. Where she helps children get ready for all of the personal-finance decisions that lie in their future – by having them thoughtfully consider what they might like to receive for birthday or holiday gifts – which teaches them how to think before they buy! She does this in free, interactive, hands-on, in-classroom workshops, at schools and community organizations, in person or online.

After a career at the Royal Bank of Canada (in their Sovereign Risk, Financial Institutions, and Corporate Treasury Departments) Karen became a mother and witnessed unintentional but nevertheless terrible waste in the form of under appreciated birthday and holiday gifts for children. At the same time news headlines were increasingly focused on rising household debt to income ratios – and – she was often in the presence of adults who were openly vocal about how they wish they had been taught more about money when they were young. Working with digital development professionals, teachers and parents, she created Gifting Sense® and the DIMS – Does It Make Sense?® Score Calculator – to turn holiday and birthday gift-giving into natural opportunities to learn about money.


  • Why teaching kids to think before they buy is a gift!
  • Why relevant and engaging financial programming is critical for success
  • Karen discusses how she helped a grade 8 student figure out the cost to buy Greenland!
  • Why focusing on financial capacity building empowers youth and builds their sense of agency
  • How Karen is creating a world of conscious buyers
  • Why using the DIMS Score® can help all of us make well-informed and thoughtful financial decisions


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