Revamped marriage course for Malays

Revamped marriage course for Malays

A revamped marriage preparation course will be rolled out for the Malay-Muslim community in January, with financial planning forming an integral part of it.

Couples will also be taught how to continually review each phase of their marriage life to maintain a shared value system.

As well, they will be advised to seek help early, if the need arises.

The changes in the Ministry of Social and Family Development-run course are to address the "increasingly complicated and complex" challenges faced by families, said Dr Yaacob Ibrahim, Minister-in-charge of Muslim Affairs.

He was speaking to reporters on Friday at the Engaging Hearts And Minds seminar attended by about 300 social workers and officers of family counselling centres that deal with Malay families.

Dr Yaacob said young Muslim families need to better understand the importance of how to manage their finances.

"Financial planning and forward planning is a culture we need to embed within the Malay-Muslim community," he said, adding that the lower middle class and lower-income groups concerned him most.

"Ultimately it's about living within your means," he said.

"It's nice that you're falling in love and having a family but ultimately you need to deal with the finances," he added.

The Debt Advisory Centre of the Association of Muslim Professionals has reportedly reviewed almost 80 debt cases of Malays - amounting to more than $1.7 million - since it was set up in April this year.

Debt is a major cause of marital discord and divorce, said Ms Siti Adilah Abu Bakar, director of marriage counselling centre Apkim Resources, one of 25 running the course.

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