SALT LAKE CITY, Utah — When David and Janny Say were recently given two pamphlets by their church, they were struck with the pragmatism of it all — specific suggestions on how to better manage their money, how to prepare for natural disasters or the loss of a job.
It’s a long way from Salt Lake City to Launceston, a town in the Australian island state of Tasmania. But the latest initiative of the welfare program of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, with its emphasis on self-help and independence, has already reached there and other places throughout the world.
Ten million copies of two new publications, Family Finances and Family Home Storage, by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are being distributed worldwide to teach basic family finance and food storage principles. They have been prepared in 23 languages.
The new pamphlets are an attempt to teach and encourage sound family welfare practices in all parts of the world, across all cultures.
The Family Finances pamphlet recommends easier ways to maintain a budget. It urges: “Keep a record of your expenditures. Record and review monthly income and expenses. Determine how to reduce what you spend for nonessentials.”
The Family Home Storage pamphlet suggests that families “store drinking water for circumstances in which the water supply may be polluted or disrupted.” It also recommends “using plastic bottles commonly used for juices and soda.”
Janny Say’s sister, Wendy Atkinson, was also impressed with the simplicity and helpfulness of the information she found. “My first feeling was that this is doable, whatever your circumstances. It doesn’t feel overwhelming,” she said.
Mother of two Belinda Borilla, from Marikina, Philippines, feels that the new pamphlets are very simple and concise yet contain all anyone needs to know about being prepared. She also noted that the clear and straightforward content and design of the pamphlets will make teaching these principles to children much easier.
“These resources teach the simple principles of home storage and family budgeting and encourage participation wherever you are and whatever your personal circumstances,” said Jeff Newey of the Church’s Welfare Services Department.
“They offer hope by showing it is possible for families to prepare for adversity, starting modestly by storing a few items of food, filling some leak-proof containers of water and saving a few coins each week.”
Latter-day Saint leaders, from the faith’s founder, Joseph Smith, to its current president, Gordon B. Hinckley, have been teaching principles of provident living and self-reliance since the 1800s. Some of these relate to education, work, thrift, saving, helping others by serving and making charitable donations and storing supplies for unforeseen difficult times.
At the recent semiannual world conference of the Church, Bishop Keith B. McMullin of the Presiding Bishopric quoted Church president Gordon B. Hinckley:
The best place to have some food set aside is within our homes. …
We can begin ever so modestly. We can begin with a one week’s food supply and gradually build it to a month, and then to three months … I fear that so many feel that a long-term food supply is so far beyond their reach that they make no effort at all.
Begin in a small way … and gradually build toward a reasonable objective.
This article was written by the LDS Newsroom at LDS.org.