Pro League players during the Managing Your Finances seminar at the Digicel IMAX Theatre at One Woodbrook Place in St. James.
In an ongoing effort to provide players with the necessary tools for personal and professional development, on and off the field, the TT Pro League on Wednesday hosted its second of a series of Player Development Seminars carded for 2014.
Wednesday's seminar, titled 'Managing Your Finances', took place at Digicel IMAX Theatre at One Woodbrook Place in St. James, which was also the venue for the 'Knowing Your Contract' seminar in March.
'Managing Your Finances' was facilitated by a team of First Citizens (Bank) money management officials – Krystal Attim-Phillip, Michaela Bernard, Joanne Samuel and Tricia Vincent.
Topics included Financial Planning, the Importance of Personal Savings, and Beneficial Accounts.
Players of Central FC, Caledonia AIA, Defence Force FC, Police FC, San Juan Jabloteh and St. Ann’s Rangers attended Wednesday’s seminar, some even highlighting their reasons for not being able to save or invest.
Attim-Phillip, a loans supervisor/marketing, advised players to manage their resources towards their goals, and that the time is now to start planning for the future. She said that too often young people making money don't plan for the future or have anything in their bank accounts for emergencies.
The First Citizens employee also told players that planning for a future home, a car, a business, or retirement, starts early.
"Seminars like these are really needed to enhance the knowledge of the younger players in the league, even with [seasoned players like me]," said Central FC and Trinidad and Tobago international goalkeeper Jan-Michael Williams.
"(Today) I learned a lot about investing, saving, and the importance of using money wisely,” added the 29-year-old former W Connection (T&T), White Star Woluwé FC (Belgium) and Ferencvarosi TC (Hungary) player.
"The society in which we live in today is hard, so it's really important for young people to know the importance of saving. I think Ms (Krystal Attin-) Phillip and her team did a tremendous job in bringing the point across.
"I know players domestically that have made a significant amount of money, even abroad, [during their careers] and have absolutely nothing to show for it. So seminars like these are important. It really helped us to understand the need and importance to save and invest money.
"I won’t call names but we have seen some players not use their money wisely. Regardless if you work for $10 or $200, it is important to save and invest," concluded Williams.
TT Pro League CEO Dexter Skeene, a former Trinidad and Tobago international and (Economics) graduate of Columbia University in the United States, said that each seminar is very important and that Wednesday’s 'Managing Your Finance' seminar is no different.
"Knowledge is power," he said. "… and the more information that the players have at their disposal, they are better able to make wiser decisions, which should impact positively on their lives.
"Finance, and the myriad of opportunities that present themselves to the players, is what we want to ensure that they understand and that they would be better able to utilise their finances wisely.
"And even if they are unable to invest, at this point, in all of the different products that First Citizens is offering, they can have it as information so that they can begin to plan better, to understand that they are to start living differently, start planning differently, and start looking at long term. That’s the whole crux of the matter. The focus is to have the players discuss things that not only benefit them on the field, but off the field as well."
St. Ann’s Rangers' St. Kitts/Nevis attacker Kennedy Isles was one of the many players in support of the seminar.
He said, "It was very important especially for young players, and players like me, who are foreigners. I know (now) how to budget my money."
The Rangers' player said there are more important things than "partying, going clubs, and wearing (brand-named shoes) Prada or Jordan".
"I think it was important and they should have more things like (these seminars) for the players," Isles concluded.
Upcoming seminars to be hosted by the TTPL will include 'Nutrition', 'Injury Care and Prevention', and 'Professional Development'.
Last month, Tobago-born Attorney-at-Law Dave Williams, facilitator of the 'Knowing Your Contract' seminar, told players, "(Seminars like these are) preparing the foundation for you, to improve your skill, not only at your feet."
Williams, who spoke on various aspects of a contract, such as negotiations of a contract, contractual obligations and termination of contracts, also told players to enhance their careers on and off the field, and use the opportunity presented to them in the local league as a platform to the bigger leagues outside of T&T.