Children, Youth &
Children, Youth &
Action for Sustainable Outreach
© Child and Youth Finance International (CYFI) December 2014
All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be
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First and foremost, we would like to thank the partners and collaborators in the CYFI Network. It is through their tireless work that the Child and Youth Finance Movement will be able to generate the global shift in greater financial inclusion and Economic Citizenship Education for children and youth throughout the world. We would also like to take this opportunity to thank all the people who made this publication possible by providing information on outreach figures, programming details or policy insights. Their commitment, knowledge and expertise have been invaluable in helping shape this year’s edition of Children, Youth and Finance.
In particular, we would also like to thank the CYFI Working Groups and National Platforms who assisted in the creation and compilation of this document:
The Research Working Group members who have created the CYFI Theory of Change, contributed to the CYFI Country Mapping Surveys and who have been leaders in pioneering research in the field of financial capability for children and youth.
The Education Working Group members who collaborated on the establishment of the Learning Framework for Economic Citizenship Education and who have contributed to the CYFI Education Survey.
The National Authorities who have collaborated with the CYFI Secretariat and have shown interest and passion for advancing national strategies on economic citizenship for children and youth.
We would also like to thank our donors and pro-bono partners, whose faith and unwavering support has allowed us to do so much in such little time. We thank them for dedicating your time, energies and passions to this initiative and for sharing our vision.
While Children, Youth and Finance was primarily written by Floor Knoote, CYFI’s Research Coordinator, and Jared Penner, CYFI’s Manager for Global Engagement and Evaluation, we would like to extend a special thank you to Shaireen Moon, who interned with CYFI and provided valuable contributions to this publication over the past 4 months.
We would also like to thank the following CYFI Secretariat Staff, Interns and Volunteers who provided contributions and editing services to this year’s Children, Youth and Finance: Jeroo Billimoria, Robin Willing, Sofia Ortega Tineo, Karina Avakyan, Ignacio Bianco, Rene Cuartero, Kimberley DeRose, Irene Diaz Soto, Abram van Eijk, Bianca Isaincu, Akwasi Osei, Meis Salameh, Daniele Scauso, Caitlin Watson, Robin Willing, Elliot Cole, Sean Filidis, Ilyana Panteleeva, Oleksandra Pravednyk, Priyanth Pathmarajah and Yvette Ruzibiza. A special acknowledgement goes out to Liina Liblik, CYFI’s Communications Coordinator who formatted and designed the document.
Children, Youth & Finance: Action for Sustainable Outreach………..………
Chapter 1 Introduction to Child and Youth Finance International………….……….…….…
1.1 About Child and Youth Finance International………..……….……….….16
1.2 The Movement’s Roadmap……….……….….…..….17
1.3 Child & Youth Finance International Activities……….……….………...…….18
Chapter 2 Terms and Definitions………..……….………..
2.1 Key Terms: CYFI’s Model of Economic Citizenship……….……….………32
2.2 Key Terms: Assessing Global and National Efforts……….………33
Chapter 3 Compiling Children, Youth and Finance……….……….………..……..
Chapter 4 Building the Case for Economic Citizenship……….………….………..….…
4.1 Children and Financial Capability……….……….………..……….……..………….…….…44
4.2. Financial, Social and Livelihoods Education and Their Impacts on Young People……….….……….……53
National Policies Towards Economic Citizenship……….
5.2 Economic Citizenship Education……….……….…..……….………...…64
5.3 Financial Inclusion……….………..……….….……….………....…77
5.4 Building Sustainable Livelihoods for Youth……….…………..……….……….………89
Chapter 6 Country Case Studies………..……….……….…
986.1 Introduction……….……….……….……….…….…98 6.2 Africa……….……….…98 6.3 The Americas……….……….…..……...100 6.4 Asia-Pacific……..……….……….………..……..…103 6.5 Europe……….……….………..…..……106
6.6 Middle East and North Africa………..……….….……..109
Chapter 7 Advancing Economic Citizenship through the CYFI Network……….………..
7.1 Economic Citizenship Education Programs of Civil Society Organizations……….……….……...114
7.2 Financial Institutions………..….…..……126
7.3 National Authorities……….…….………….……..……133
7.4 Youth and the CYFI Network……….……….……….……….…...…...138
7.5 Outreach of the CYFI Network……….….…….……139
Chapter 8 Key Findings and Policy Recommendations………..………..….…
8.1 Key Findings………..……….………….……….……….…………..…….146
Annex A: Bibliography……….……….…
Annex B: Glossary……….………
Annex C: List of Countries in State of the Field……….………
Annex D: ECE Rapid Mapping Report – Template………..………
Millions of children throughout the world are dealing with adversity, are facing extreme deprivation, have no prospect of finding employment and have no access to finance to build a livelihood and break their cycle of poverty. Around the world, there are young people heading households, providing the main income for their families or working their way through school. The provision of more or complete autonomy for children and youth within the financial system (being able to control one’s own finances within certain conditions), and having the skills needed to thrive within the financial and the labor markets, could provide a significant benefit and additional means of survival for a great number of young people. Financial capability and the creation of sustainable livelihoods of children and youth unquestionably is a key focus point on the agenda of national and regional authorities, civil society organizations and financial institutions. This is in line with the current global focus on creating a savings culture, improving saving habits and creating employment opportunities for young people. However, despite the growing evidence that financial inclusion, access to savings and asset building can be beneficial for young people, there is a significant lack of focus on financial inclusion in national policies for the general population, let alone specifically for youth. This is partially linked to a current regulatory framework in which minors are still not allowed to open and operate an account without parental supervision.
Cases of regulatory reform in the interest of the child do exist and should be pushed forward as benchmark examples for those national authorities that are willing to advance the financial inclusion of young people. Similarly, some exemplary cases of holistic curricula, which include all components of Economic Citizenship Education, can be used as a learning model for curriculum integration and for those programs executed by civil society and other education providers. Building the Case for Economic Citizenship
The evidence base for the financial capabilities of youth has grown exponentially in the last few years. Gradually, the body of evidence for family assets and savings and individual accounts is growing extensively. All in all, the results of these studies are positive, indicating improved savings behavior and educational outcomes as key outcomes for young people. It remains to be seen whether financial inclusion, in its many forms, may also be linked to increased confidence, outlook on the future, and employment for youth.
Recent research on the role that financial education plays in the lives of young people draws an encouraging, but still somewhat mixed, picture on the impact of financial literacy initiatives. Where effects on financial knowledge appear to take place across the board, reports on effects on financial attitudes and behavior are still inconclusive. It is found that a range of situation specific features may be related to the impacts of financial education, including location and the delivery method of courses, affecting the outcomes of treatment. Moreover, there is little agreement, or supporting research, on what encompasses effective financial education and whether increasing financial literacy in young people will actually lead to better financial outcomes and behaviors. Features that have been identified as potentially having a beneficial effect on the financial capability of young people include practical learning, soft skills development and the cultivation of responsible financial attitudes and practices, findings that resonate with CYFI’s Model of Economic Citizenship.
The former comes back in the evidence on the combination of access to finance with financial education. Where practice has long been seen as a key component in learning and needs to be taken into consideration, the evidence on this concept linked to financial capability is still in development. It does indicate that teaching children financial capability that includes a practical “learning while doing” approach, could generate benefits over teaching financial knowledge alone. Existing opportunities for parents, schools and teachers to support children in the development of financial capacities to defer gratification and familiarize themselves with finance, all aid the development of a child’s executive functions, underpinning their financial habits and behaviors.
Last, despite a broader movement against lecture-based approaches to education (and towards more active learning methodologies) results on complementing financial education with other interpersonal life skills are rare. Those studies that are available are predominantly showing positive results, as evidence suggests that there are benefits to using a multi-pronged approach to empower youth. Financial education programs complemented with a life skills component appear to have the biggest effect on financial behavior. Moreover, results show that girls may benefit more from a multi-pronged approach than boys do. More evidence is necessary to validate those skills needed to truly build a sustainable livelihood for young economic citizens.
It is advised that future research should seek to improve the overall quality of the literature, which includes the application of robust experimental methods and the minimization of potential bias. This will help the overall value and comparability of research projects. Research should seek to explore the extent to which programs change learners’ attitudes as regards to money management, as well as improve savings behavior. Similarly, studies that have rendered robust positive results should be replicated, in order to impact policy and bring success to scale. In addition, the long term effects of financial education programs of any kind should be studied. As, over the years, financial education programs have been implemented around the world, their effects may be assessed in the near future. Last, research on financial education is still predominantly US focused and should include more samples from around the world. Platforms of researchers dedicated to the issue of economic citizenship should be created to bridge the regional gaps in evidence and generate research that is regionally specific and relevant to local policy makers and practitioners. CYFI is aiming to establish 5 regional research platforms to better engage local researchers in this capacity.
National Policies towards Economic Citizenship
In CYFI’s assessment of national and regional policies towards Economic Citizenship Education, it is revealed that more than half of the sample countries either have a financial education strategy in place or currently in draft. Of those that have a strategy or are drafting a strategy, the majority focuses on young people, indicating an increasing awareness of the importance of teaching financial skills at a younger age. Financial education is further complemented by other social and livelihood skills in both strategies and curricula by an increasing number of countries. There appears to be a slight preference for complementing finance with a social education component rather than a livelihoods component, which contradicts the findings from the 2013 Children, Youth and Finance Report. The majority of countries that have integrated elements of ECE, focus on financial education as a stand-alone topic with the combined integration of social and livelihoods education relatively low across all regions. However, a growing proportion of countries are including all three elements of the ECE framework in their strategies, an encouraging development in the Child and Youth Finance Movement.
Integration of financial education into national curricula appears to be higher in OECD countries. Many other countries with a strategy in place are still going through the lengthy and costly process of implementing this strategy and
integrating these skills into the curricula. Conversely, there are also cases where no strategy is in place, but components of ECE have already been integrated into national curricula. CYFI encourages the formation of a national strategy regardless, in order to better facilitate a coordinated response that reaches a maximum amount of children and youth both in and out of the formal school system.
The link between financial inclusion and financial education is made by some authorities, but not significantly so. Comparing the number of financial education strategies with financial inclusion strategies indicates a significant lack of focus on financial inclusion for both adults and young people. Many national authorities do collaborate with other stakeholders on the issues of financial capability, including financial service providers as well as those responsible for delivering financial education, such as youth serving organizations. These committees may be the best platform to link the issues of access and education at the national level.
In the assessment of national financial inclusion strategies, it appears that only a small proportion of countries have a specific policy in place encouraging access to finance for young people. This can be attributed to the fact that many high income countries already enjoy a high percentage of their population whom are banked, thus making a financial inclusion strategy redundant. However, most countries with high financial inclusion rates still consider a financial literacy strategy to be of national importance.
This is partially linked to a current regulatory framework in which minors are still not allowed to open and operate an account without parental supervision. The most common barriers for youth financial access across developing countries are minimum age and ID requirements. Some pioneering examples on financial regulation facilitating access for youth under the ages of 18 can be found in Ethiopia, Philippines and Uruguay. Initial analysis, however, indicates that minors are not generally a common target of regulation policies that allow young people to be financially included in an
autonomous way. Moreover, when financial inclusion strategies do exist they do not necessarily translate into regulation that facilitates greater financial inclusion for minors. Some regulations are stronger than others in allowing access to money transactions and remittances for children and youth, which could indicate a window of opportunity when dealing with youth financial access. Additionally, a specific focus should to be given to the protection of young people’s rights in financial markets, especially with new financial products and pre-paid cards becoming available to young consumers. CYFI works with regulatory bodies to map this landscape and will make this one of its key priorities in 2015.
Advancing Economic Citizenship through the CYFI Network
There is a general increase in holistic approaches to financial education within the CYFI network, with a significant proportion of civil society programs focusing on all three components of the Economic Citizenship Education framework. CYFI is pleased to see the increase this past year in partners and collaborators reporting that they are covering elements of financial, social and livelihoods education in their youth programming. Surprisingly, the results show that more financial education programs are combined with social education, rather than with livelihoods education. This
contradicts previously held assumptions that entrepreneurship elements were a more logical complement to traditional financial literacy. Although demonstrating a preference for informal savings channel, results show that a clear majority of civil society actors included a financial access component linked to their educational programming. There is also some evidence of the knock on effects of financial literacy and entrepreneurship skills building in the teachers and family members of young people. This supports the belief that ECE, when delivered effectively to children and youth, can have a wider impact on the household and the community at large.
Financial institutions in the network are offering a variety of child and youth focused accounts, with a great variety of features. Still, despite a few benchmark examples, these predominantly give minors minimum control over the opening and management of their accounts. A legal guardian is often needed to access these accounts and this can deter young people from depositing and withdrawing their savings on their own terms. Most banks offer an educational component with the account, but the duration of the lessons, and the learning methodology utilized, varies greatly. The CYFI Banking Principles are not adhered to across financial sectors on a widespread basis, providing CYFI with plenty of opportunities to inform and incentive financial institutions in the network on the integration of these components.
Results further reveal that a majority of national authorities in the CYFI network are part of national strategies in their respective countries. Close to 85% of all government partners are involved with financial education either independently or in collaboration with other national stakeholders. Still, financial education remains the main focus for most national ECE related initiatives. Although some progress is being made, more work is needed to encourage national authorities to adapt the holistic framework of ECE in national curricula and polices. Furthermore, close to half of government programs currently link financial education to a savings component, confirming that a practical dimension to developing financial capability in young people is a growing practice within the CYFI network. Regulatory authorities should closely monitor progress on financial education programs to get an accurate measurement on how effective they are in relation to improved financial behaviours amongst young people.
With responses from a total of 88 partners and collaborators, it is reported that the collective CYFI network is reaching 35,760,962 children under the age of 18 with at least financial products and/or financial education or entrepreneurship programming. What is more, the link between financial inclusion and education is increasingly being made within the CYFI network, as this was demonstrated through the fact that 45% of the children and youth in the CYFI network, over 16 million young people, were being exposed to integrated financial and educational services. Measuring and reporting on outreach figures is not often a requirement for national authorities and as a result is not always given the attention it deserves. Through their responsibility to their citizens, and their potential to reach significant scale, a greater emphasis should be placed on national authorities to report on the outreach and the impact of their programming. It is highlighted that “data are a true public good, and are underfunded, especially in low-income countries. That must change. Technical and financial support from high-income countries is sorely needed to fill this crucial (data) gap”.1
1United Nations (2013). A New Global Partnership: Eradicate Poverty And Transform Economies Through Sustainable development. The Report of the High-Level Panel of Eminent Persons on the Post-2015 Development Agenda. p.56
Based on the findings of this document, CYFI suggests the following recommendations:
To provide children and youth with a significant position in national financial inclusion strategies, financial regulations and consumer protection policies.
To increase the focus on those countries drafting their national strategies, in order to advance a youth focus and a holistic approach to Economic Citizenship from the initiation of national policies and programs.
To continue to focus on linking ECE Education and financial inclusion initiatives across the world.
To ensure productive coordination and collaboration among diverse stakeholders on Economic Citizenship at the national, regional and global level.
To intensify youth participation and hear youth input during the drafting and consultation phases of national initiatives on financial inclusion and education for young people.
To encourage focus from all stakeholders to increase the availability of youth data for further research.
CYFI believes that in order to reach 100 million children and youth by the end of 2015 with financial services and ECE, a coordinated effort is needed at the country level, with government institutions taking the lead role in this effort. While civil society has led outreach efforts up to this point, it has become clear that reaching scale globally can only be done if national governments are leading with NGOs and financial institutions taking a complimentary or advisory role. CYFI aims to remain a constant source of information and technical advice for all of its partners and collaborators. Furthermore, CYFI will continue to track the progress of the movement and provide all thoughtful insights needed to help the network reach its ambitious goals.
Children, Youth & Finance: Action for Sustainable Outreach
As a key step towards creating impactful and systematic change, this publication has sought to
investigate the status quo for the system surrounding children and youth’s financial issues. It seeks
to understand the factors underlying the global financial challenges for children and youth;
determine a theory of change; study innovations; assess the impact on the child and to determine
the systems that need to change so that today’s negative trends can be reversed.
This publication is the third in an annual series of publications documenting the state of field in
economic citizenship and the state of the work of partners in the CYFI network and provides an
analysis of current trends and gaps which need be addressed.
Children, Youth & Finance begins in Chapter 1
with an introduction and a brief history of the
Child and Youth Finance Movement and its
It explores how the Movement was born in
response to the concerns shared directly by
children and youth. It outlines the Movement’s
target of reaching 100 million children and youth
in 100 countries by 2015.
CHAPTER 2 outlines the key terms and
definitions used throughout the document.
This includes definitions of key concepts such as
national strategies and national committees as
well the concepts in the CYFI Theory of Change.
CHAPTER 3 outlines the methodology in
collecting the data which is used to inform this
It details the three key surveys distributed to
National Authorities, Financial Institutions and to
NGOS. It also highlights the key data limitations
faced in the creation of this document – namely,
that there exists a distinct shortage of data
available on financial indicators for children and
CHAPTER 4 lays out CYFI’s Theory of Change
and the evidence available from rigorous
The Theory of Change stresses the importance of
creating the necessary systems to support the
building of financial capabilities among children
and youth and proposes that financial education,
social education, and financial inclusion are the
building blocks of empowerment and financial
capability that underpin economic citizenship for
children and youth.
CHAPTER 5 aims to give an impression of the
current status of global, regional and national
policies focused on Economic Citizenship
Education (ECE), the financial inclusion of young
people and their sustainable livelihoods.
at national strategies, regional agendas and
global efforts, such as the post 2015
CHAPTER 6 highlights countries and their
existing efforts in financial education programs
and financial inclusion policies.
looks at civil society initiatives, banking products
for youth and regulation.
CHAPTER 7 describes the findings of CYFI’s
assessment of financial institutions, education
providers and national authorities in the CYFI
It shows the connection between
education on finance and experience in finance;
the extent to which programs incorporate all
three components of Economic Citizenship and
the connection between stakeholders that are
involved in financial capability initiatives.
CHAPTER 8 provides a set of recommendations
to the stakeholders, based on the findings of
It emphasizes collaboration, integration and the
inclusion of youth participation.
Purple page right
Introduction to Child
and Youth Finance
Introduction to Child and
About Child and Youth Finance International
Dedicated to enhancing the financial capabilities of children and youth, Child and Youth Finance International (CYFI) connects the world’s largest Network of organizations within the field of Child and Youth Finance. We provide support in an advisory, relationship-brokerage and knowledge-sharing role to our partners who - along with our stakeholders, collaborators and supporters - are collectively known as the Child and Youth Finance Movement (the CYF Movement, or the Movement). The Movement includes national authorities, financial authorities and the world’s largest financial institutions, international NGOs, bi-lateral and multilateral foundations, leading academics and, most importantly, children and youth.
The Movement has one central objective: increase the economic citizenship of children and youth. This means giving all children and youth aged 8- 24 the knowledge to make wise financial decisions , the opportunity to accumulate savings, and the skills to find employment, earn a livelihood and ultimately break the cycle of poverty.
Launched in 2012, the Movement has already spread to over 100 countries, and through our multi-sectoral network of partners and stakeholders has reached more than 36 million children and youth. We are well on our way to reaching our goal of 100 million children and youth in 100 countries through national platforms, CYFI’s Movement of partners and collaborators or through CYFI Secretariat projects and initiatives.
The CYFI Secretariat connects the Network and facilitates the growth of the Movement through innovation, and enabling the sharing of best practices in order to evolve the financial eco-system for young people. Maintaining an innovative spirit, diversity and a broad range of capabilities is essential to ensure that we reach our target of 100 million children and youth.
Children and youth are the future economic actors whose financial decisions will dictate the future of world economies. Providing young people with the economic and social environment to prosper and the competences (financial, social and livelihoods) to thrive has a meaningful impact on the lives of individuals and the communities in which they live.
Communities will benefit, as a new generation of financially capable children and youth grow up to be responsible investors and entrepreneurs. Such important skills and experiences of managing financial resources at an early age can allow for lessened financial vulnerability thereby reducing the risk of poverty caused by debt.
The recent financial crisis has highlighted the need for savings and prudent financial management for all persons. This is especially true for children and youth, who are a particularly vulnerable age group. Promoting a positive financial culture in children and youth is essential to ensuring a financially literate population, capable of making well-informed decisions and of lowering financial vulnerability and risk.
The mission of CYFI is to empower all children and youth around the world, particularly those who are vulnerable and marginalized, by increasing their financial capability, enhancing their awareness of social and economic rights and improving their access to appropriate financial services so as to build their assets and invest in their own futures.
“Access to financial and social assets is essential to helping youth make
their own economic decisions and escape poverty.”
- UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon in his letter to the 2013 CYFI Global Summit
1.2 The Movement’s Roadmap
Through a consultative process with the world’s experts in their respective fields, CYFI created a strategic roadmap to guide it towards fulfilling its goals and achieving its mission.
At the core of this roadmap are the different focus areas of the Movement. These reflect the Movement’s combined macro and micro levels focuses: building the necessary financial knowledge, skills on an individual level, and on reshaping systems on the macro level – systems including the financial, regulatory, educational, technological or otherwise.
The focus areas and the goals of each focus area are as follows:
The focus areas and the goals of each focus area are as follows:
Regional and National
To ensure that national and regional bodies include child and youth finance initiatives in their national agendas. By 2015, 100 million children and youth in 100 countries will receive Economic Citizenship Education through national strategies and programs, and will have access to a savings account.
To strategically engage leading global
international civil society organization, research institutions and young people, on policies and activities that lead to greater financial inclusion, Economic Citizenship Education and sustainable livelihoods for children and youth around the world.
To increase financial inclusion as well as to support and stimulate youth entrepreneurship.
To increase visibility and public awareness of the goals and initiatives of the Movement and CYFI’s network of partners and collaborators as well as to secure financial
commitments for the activities of the CYFI Secretariat.
Economic citizenship Education and Financial Inclusion
100 million children and youth have access to Economic Citizenship Education and appropriate financial products by 2015.
To ensure that these goals are achieved, partners of the CYF Movement have committed to create the necessary programs, provide necessary services and/or re-examine current policies.
1.3 Child & Youth Finance International Activities
In the 3 short years that CYFI has been in existence, the impact of the Network has exceeded even our own
expectations: CYFI’s Network of partners and collaborators surpassed our 1st target – reaching 125 countries and 36 million children – and we are well on our way to go beyond our initial goal. Up to now, CYFI has focused our energy on garnering support and creating international, high-impact awareness. This section highlights our most notable achievements to date.
1.3.1 The 2014 High-Level Stakeholders Meeting
In May 2014, CYFI hosted a High-level Stakeholders Meeting with UNCDF at the United Nations in New York. The Meeting, appropriately entitled “A Chance for Change”, brought together UN permanent missions, central banks, government ministries, financial institutions, multilateral and bilateral organizations, and NGOs with young people. Importantly, it allowed young people to raise their voices, calling for components of youth economic citizenship to be included in the post-2015 MDGs as well as for permanent youth representation at the United Nations itself.
Attended by 340 children, youth and high-level stakeholders from 90 countries A Chance for Change: Child and Youth Finance and the Post-2015 Agenda was a high-level stakeholders meeting organized by CYFI with the support of UNCDF on May 23, 2014. It was held at the United Nations Headquarters in New York.
Children and youth from across the world presented their ideas on what should be included in the post-2015 development agenda. They addressed the high-level representatives on behalf of 4,000 youth who participated in CYFI’s global youth survey, the 6,500 young people involved in the DreamsBank campaign on Facebook, and 3 million impressions on Twitter. All recommendations for the post-2015 agenda were structured along the themes of basic access to financial services, Economic Citizenship Education and youth livelihoods (employment and
At the meeting children and youth voiced their recommendations directly to UN Ambassadors and Special
Representatives, Central Bank Governors, Ministers, and other leaders from the corporate and social sectors. They received a strong commitment from the policy makers that their asks, such as a bank account and financial education for every child and active support of youth employment, will be included in the post-2015 development agenda.
1.3.2 Global Summits
Figure 1: Sectoral Representation at CYFI Global Summits
Figure 2: Children and Youth Representation at CYFI Global Youth Summit (found on page 17 of CYF 2013)
In 2012 and 2013 CYFI held a Global Summit and Awards Ceremony in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, and Istanbul, Turkey respectively. The Global Summit and Awards Ceremonies provided the Movement’s partners with the
opportunity to convene and celebrate their accomplishments. In 2013, 413 participants from 102 countries attended the Summit, including 101 children and youth.
At both Summits the following outcomes were celebrated:
Participants committed their support to the Movement’s principles
Participants shared best practices in Economic Citizenship Education, financial inclusion and livelihood (employability
and entrepreneurship) skills
Technological opportunities in the sector were discussed by experts, and the state of the Movement worldwide was
presented by regional stakeholders.
Regional sessions were held to allow for the sharing of experiences and joint strategy-formulation by stakeholders
from the same region
Support from the UN Secretary General
The CYF Movement has enjoyed the support of the UN Secretary General. In his letter to the CYFI Global Summit 2013, the UN Secretary General wrote: “Access to financial and social assets is essential to helping youth make their own economic decisions and escape poverty. I join you in celebrating the milestone of the Child and Youth Finance International movement now operating in 100 countries. I encourage you to exceed your target of providing 100 million children and youth with financial services that are both responsive to their needs and protective of their rights.”
CYFI holds Global Youth Meetings concurrently to each Global Summit. In 2013 101 young people aged 8 to 18 from over 40 countries, met to participate in an interactive two-day meeting. Through a series of games and activities, they were able to share views about the financial issues that most mattered to them. They also had the opportunity to offer their own financial policy recommendations directly to leading policymakers.
●Middle East and North Africa
● Latin America and the Caribbean
●Europe and Central Asia
● Asia and the Pacific
1.1.3 Global Money Week
Global Money Week is a worldwide money awareness week. Every year, during the second week of March, young people around the globe talk, play, create, sing, read, discuss and learn about saving, money,
changing economic systems and building a financial future for youth. It is about joining together – children, youth, parents, organizations and entire communities - to start action to reshape finance, and give young people the tools to shape their own future.
Global Money Week is a series of activities organized nationally and coordinated globally by CYFI. The events raise awareness as to the importance of Economic Citizenship and actively engage children and youth on these issues.
More than 3 million young people in 118 countries participated in 2014 Global Money Week events and activities. This was a significant increase from 2013, where 80 countries, 1 million children, and 403 organizations were involved in organizing Global Money Week events. Global Money Week was launched in 2012 with 21 countries and 33,000 children participating in the inaugural edition.
For many of the participating countries, Global Money Week provides a platform for multi-sectorial national stakeholders to collaborate- many for the first time – on developing financial education and inclusion initiatives and policies in their countries.
Global Money Week Celebration
Examples of activities that take place around the world during Global Money Week are described below:
Ringing of the NASDAQ stock exchange– Child and Youth Finance International was twice invited to ring the NASDAQ opening bell to celebrate Global Money Week in 2012 and 2013.
Visits to banks– Children and youth visited banks and other financial institutions to learn about how they work.
Visits to the stock exchange– Children and youth visited the stock exchange, with some of them ringing the opening bell to signal the beginning of trade!
Workshops and lessons in schools and centers– Children and youth enjoyed financial education lessons in schools and universities.
Talking to Central Bank Governors– Children shared their recommendations and opinions with the governors of their central banks.
(Web) Chat with policy makers– Children had the chance to discuss financial education and financial access with global policymakers.
Global web chat– Youngsters connected via web chats to share their experiences.
Debates – Debates on financial education, employment and enterprise took place in schools.
Visit to money museums– Money museums opened their doors to youngsters to teach them about money and its history.
Publications – Various publications to encourage children to learn about finance were made available in schools and libraries.
Contests and competitions– From poster-making contests to football competitions, children engaged in fun contests on topics of financial education and inclusion.
Theatre– youngsters expressed themselves through theatre and the arts on financial issues.
Financial education games– Team games took place for a fun way of learning about finance.
Radio talk shows– Radio was used as a medium to share about financial education and inclusion.
Book bank– Special book banks were set up to share publications on finance for children.
Folk Stories– Telling stories has always been an effective means of teaching. It was no difference with teaching financial matters.
Exhibitions – Youngsters had the opportunity to display their artwork and projects in interactive exhibitions.
Cartoons– Cartoons and comic books were used to communicate key messages to children and youth.
Youth budget to parliament– Children and youth presented their recommendations and input into the youth budgets of their countries.
Ensuring inclusion– All children were in included in financial education activities – no matter if they were street children, children in juvenile correctional centers or children from care homes.
Learning from the market– Children and youth carried out their own enterprises, with some presenting them to the central bank governor.
Other innovations and fun activities from across the world included jigsaw puzzles of banknotes, money magicians, face painting, financial mimes and famous bands singing about the importance of saving.
“I have just realized that owning an account is not just for adults but for
everyone who wants to have a secure future. I am going to open one so I
can save all my coins for investment after school.”
School-aged youth during Global Money Week
“I couldn’t believe that we were talking to children in a different country
who were doing the same things we were doing here! Even though I didn’t
understand some of their words, I realized that they were learning about
saving and money and that kind of stuff just like us here. I liked that we
looked like we were on a TV show.”
6th grade girl, referring to the videoconference with children from Peru
1.3.3 Working with the G-20
CYFI worked closely with the Mexican G20 Presidency on emphasizing the importance of financial access for children and youth. Paragraph 53 of the G-20 leaders declaration states “We recognize the need for women and youth to gain access to financial services and financial education”.
CYFI also played a facilitative role at the Y20 event in which children and youth expressed their desire for increased financial education and financial inclusion.
1.3.4 Children, Youth and Finance
Children, Youth and Finance is the organization’s annual flagship document. It compiles data gathered from within the Network to document the state of the Movement and provides an analysis of current trends and gaps which need be addressed. In its first edition in 2011, the document provided the baseline upon which the Movement’s outreach and impact will be measured in future years. In this year’s edition the data gathered shows that 36 million children and
youth have been reached through partners and collaborators in the CYFI Network in 125 countries through financial services or Economic Citizenship Education
1.3.5 Academic Documents
In 2014 CYFI released its first quarterly Network Brief, aimed to provide the CYFI network with a review of research, evidence gaps and policy recommendations on a key or innovative topic in the field of economic citizenship of children and youth. CYFI published the academics-led review of literature examining the links between Economic Citizenship Education and financial inclusion and how these impact empowerment of children and youth and their financial capability. The encouraging results of the review outlined the areas of work where further academic review and research must be undertaken. Successively, CYFI and the Centre for Social Development (CSD) published two research briefs on the Conceptual Development of the CYFI Model of Children and Youth as Economic Citizens and on Research Evidence on the CYFI Model of Children and Youth as Economic Citizens, highlighting a clear mandate for moving forward the area of child and youth finance and recommending areas of future academic research.
1.3.5 Online Resource Sharing Platform
CYFI’s website was launched in 2012 and serves as a hub of information on activities, organizations and resources on financial topics for children and youth. The website currently houses over 600 resources ranging from academic papers, policy documents, discussion papers, and news articles. All of our partners are listed on the website, with details on the programs and services they offer which are designed to increase financial education and inclusion for children and youth. The website also features country pages. Displayed on each country page are CYFI’s partnering organizations who are working in that specific country, as well as information on the country’s policies on financial inclusion and education.
Recognition for the Movement
CYFI spread the messages of the Movement by ringing the NASDAQ opening bell for two
consecutive years to mark Global Money Week. In 2013 the bell-ringing ceremony was celebrated
in collaboration with UNCDF.
In 2012, CYFI’s Managing Director Jeroo Billimoria was awarded by the Union of Arab Banks for
the achievements of the CYF Movement. Among the other awardees was Managing Director of
the IMF Christine Lagarde.
CYFI was listed in the Top 100 NGO list published by the Global Journal. It was also given the
honor of “most promising NGO”.
CYFI was a semi-finalist of the Mexico G20 Financial Inclusion Challenge: Innovative Solutions for
Unlocking Access in the G20 competition. CYFI’s proposal, Schoolbank, was among the top 12 of
257 entries from 62 countries. As a semi- finalist, CYFI was invited to attend the high-level
delegation meeting organized by G20 to mark the conclusion of Mexico’s Presidency of the G20.
1.3.6 Regional Meetings
From October to December, 2014, Regional Meetings were held at the request of participants of the CYFI Global Summits. The meetings served to bring together diverse stakeholders from within each region to exchange expertise, form collaborations and bring forward regional-specific child and youth finance issues. Meetings were held in 3 of the 5 regions in which the Movement works. In total, the Regional Meetings brought together 441 senior level
participants from 75 countries. The Meetings took place in Macedonia, Guatemala, Addis Adiba and Malaysia. Youth representatives were present at the Europe and Central Asia meeting and shared their feedback directly with high-level stakeholders from the region.
Figure 3 Industry Representation at CYFI Regional Meetings
220.127.116.11 Europe & Central Asia
The Third CYFI Regional Meeting for Europe and Central Asia, hosted and organized in collaboration with the National Bank of the Republic of Macedonia, was held on October 2-3 in Skopje, Macedonia. In parallel, a youth meeting gathered 61 youth representatives from across the region that met and created policy recommendations to be taken further by the meeting participants.
The meeting gathered policy makers representing Central Banks, Ministries of Education, Ministries of Finance and Social Policy, civil society and private sector, but also 61 youth delegates from across the region. During the two day Regional Meeting, policy makers and youth representatives discussed on topics related to financial education, financial inclusion, youth unemployment and entrepreneurship.
18.104.22.168 Americas and the Caribbean
The Third CYFI Regional Meeting for the Americas and the Caribbean was held in Guatemala City, Guatemala from October 19-19 2014, within the framework of the IX Regional Conference on Remittances, Microfinance and Inclusion Financiera (COREMIF). This event was co-organized by the Banking Association of Guatemala (ABG), the Banking
School of Guatemala (EBG), CYFI and Aflatoun International, becoming one of the largest in the central sub-region and one of the largest in Latin America in terms of remittances, microfinance, financial inclusion and financial education. This conference provided an unprecedented opportunity for the CYF Movement to strengthen its relations with Central American countries, and to respond to the unique needs of the countries in this part of the continent. It also opened dialogue between different sectors of Guatemalan society and regional governments.
The meeting brought together about 150 participants from 13 countries in the region, Including government
representatives, experts from public and private institutions, regulatory bodies in the financial system, representatives of academia and research institutes.
22.214.171.124 Asia and the Pacific
On November 3-4, 2014 CYFI held its First Regional Focus Group Meeting and Workshop Series in the Asia-Pacific region at Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, co-hosted by Allianz Malaysia Berhad. This is one of the first steps that CYFI is taking in reshaping its strategy for the region. Day 1 was attended by 16 delegates from 8 countries coming from central banks, government ministries, international organizations and multilateral bodies. On Day 2 CYFI held a joint meeting with Aflatoun bringing together the national authorities from Day 1 with (I)NGOs, foundations, and financial education resource centers to centrally discuss scaling at the national level child social and financial education. On Day 2, the meeting and workshop series had a total of 64 attendees from 15 countries in the Asia-Pacific.
The Focus Group Meeting and Workshop Series provided the much needed clarity in identifying the key challenges at the regional and national levels. Moreover, the meeting has also enabled sharing of experiences, best practices, and expertise to formulate viable multi-sectorial action plans for each country represented in the meeting. Some of the key recommendations that came out of the meeting include: (1) an increased need for coordination among stakeholders at the national level; (2) the integration of financial education, financial inclusion, and consumer protection initiatives; (3) consultation of youth in designing appropriate products and corresponding regulations; and, (4) most importantly, the importance of starting young as financial behavior are values formed at a young age. 126.96.36.199 Africa
The 3rd Annual CYFI Regional Meeting for Africa was held at the African Union Commission Headquarters in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia on December 4-5, 2014. The meeting brought together Africa’s policy makers, educators, research and academic institutions, and financial service providers. One of the main outcomes of the meeting was to develop a common African position on the advancement of a unified financial education and inclusion plan of action for children and youth across the continent.
During a variety of workshops and plenary sessions it was concluded that a great deal of innovation and action is needed to create an economically active and responsible youth population by addressing the various barriers to youth financial inclusion in Africa.
At the close of the meeting a policy paper pledging for an integrated African Policy for Child and Youth Financial Inclusion to be part of the African Union’s Agenda 2063 was announced. This policy paper details the
recommendations needed for “a global strategy to optimize use of Africa’s resources for the benefit of all Africans” for an integrated, prosperous and peaceful Africa.
African leaders must develop and pursue national financial programs and strategies for children and youth with the objectives of ensuring that every child and youth in Africa has access to safe financial services, quality Economic Citizenship Education, and the opportunity to attain a sustainable livelihood.
Providing young people with financial services, which include an educational component, enhances a young person’s ability to make their own economic decisions and escape the cycle of poverty. Such access to appropriate financial services allows young people in increase their awareness of their social and economic rights and their ability to build assets and invest in their own future.
1.3.7 Country Change
Figure 4 CYFI Country Roadmap
Figure 5 Tier 1 and 2 Countries by Region
CYFI assists national authorities in setting up Child and Youth Finance regional and national platforms. The objective of these platforms is to create national strategies and action plans for realizing Economic Citizenship for children and youth, as well as to facilitate efforts of various stakeholders towards achieving this goal.
To best accommodate the Movement and to tailor strategies to various needs of national stakeholders, CYFI classified the countries in the Movement by 3 tiers: Tier 1, Tier 2 and Tier 3. Tier 1 countries are countries where a national platform has been set up to include key players in the country, usually the financial regulatory authority, Ministry of Education, and Bankers’ Association. Tier 2 countries are countries that are in the process of forming a national platform. Tier 3 refers to countries where CYFI is working closely with individual organizations such as NGOs and banks.
During 2014 CYFI has many highlights to share in terms of examples of the strategic process for national and regional platforms. For the sake of brevity, we wish to highlight one example per region in the highlight section below. A full overview of our partners and the countries with whom CYFI is actively involved with may be found on our website. 188.8.131.52 Chile:
Prior to working with CYFI, representatives from various stakeholder groups in Chile were conducting
separate efforts to address the different areas of financial education and financial inclusion for children and
youth. During the CYFI Regional Meeting for the Americas the different stakeholders saw the opportunity
to combine their efforts. They successfully carried out a joint Global Money Week event and created a
national working group. The purpose of this working group is to create national and coordinated efforts for
financial inclusion and access for children and youth in Chile.
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) attended the CYFI Annual Summit in 2012 and 2013, which have helped build up the case and the urgency to create an environment that is socially- and financially-inclusive for young people in India. Building on this, the RBI has made a decision to lower the minimum age for a minor to independently open a savings account to 10 years old – marking a progressive way to empower them as economic citizens. Accordingly, CYFI is now working with the Indian Banks Association (IBA) in designing a pilot for a SchoolBank in India to be launched in early 2015, thus providing a more conducive channel for Indian youngsters to be engaged in the financial system. These steps show CYFI’s big strides in engaging a multi-sectoral approach to advancing social and financial inclusion of young people.
After meeting at CYFI’s Regional Meeting for Europe and Central Asia in 2012, representatives from the Central Bank of Latvia and the Financial and Capital Markets Commission began collaborating on the formation of a working group for financial education. On February 24th 2014, after many negotiations, the strategic partners signed a memorandum on the implementation of the National Strategy for Financial Literacy in Latvia during 2014–2020. The strategy is aimed at promoting a progressive rise in the public financial literacy. This year, 7 multi-sectoral organization have joined the original collaborating team in increasing national literacy, namely, the Financial and Capital Market Commission (FCMC), Ministry of Education and Science, National Centre for Education, BA School of Business and Finance, Consumer Rights Protection Centre, Association of Commercial Banks of Latvia and Latvian Insurers
Association. CYFI is officially recognized as one of the main contributors to this plan in the national strategy. Financial education is also a priority in Latvia: they are actively improving their children and youth’s financial education rates during their national Financial Education Week which is timed to correspond with Global Money Week.
Bank Al-Maghrib and the Moroccan Foundation for Financial Education are collaborating with CYFI to prioritize the topic of youth financial capabilities in the financial and educational sectors. Bank Al-Maghrib led a series of successful national initiatives to set up the Foundation for Financial Education. This body, with the participation of 13 local ministries and local bodies, is leading the drafting of the national strategy for financial education for the entire population - with youth as the main focus. Global Money Week has been celebrated annually in Morocco since 2012. Each year, the celebrations have involved an increasing number of stakeholders from the public and private sector. In 2012, Morocco won the CYFI Global Money Week Country Award.
More than 50% of Uganda’s population is under the age of 15. The National Curriculum Development Centre (NCDC) and the Private Education Development Network (PEDN) have been CYFI partners since 2011. The Capital Markets Authority (CMA) became partners in 2013. Inspired by persistent advocacy on the need for financial education for children and youth, the NCDC initiated reforms in 2011 to incorporate financial literacy into the national education curricula. In 2013, NCDC, CMA and PEDN led the formation and implementation of a Ugandan Strategy for Financial Literacy launched in 2013. Financial literacy is currently taught in secondary school through subjects such as commerce and entrepreneurship. NCDC, PEDN, and CMA sponsor the teaching of financial literacy in primary and secondary schools through the development and dissemination of educational materials and teacher training programs. NCDC, PEDN and CMA celebrate Global Money Week as an integral annual activity.
1.3.8 Youth Engagement
As a Movement dedicated to children and youth, CYFI ensures that youth are offered a platform through which they can offer their inputs on the strategic direction and priorities of the Movement. The participation of children and youth is ensured through their active participation at the Global Youth Meetings, the Global Summits, as well as through the CYFI Youth Committee.
The CYFI Youth Committee is a group of socially conscious youth who are passionate about changing the way their generation’s financial capability is handled.
“What some of us don’t notice is that some parents aren’t even trying to
teach us about money. I think 8 is the right age for a child to have money.
If a bank teaches a child to save that will grow our economy.”
Child aged 16, participant at the CYFI Global Summit.
Through social media platforms, they are also invited to share their opinions and thoughts, through direct interaction, polls and surveys. In 2012, children and youth offered feedback to the Basel Committee’s Core Principles on Banking Supervision through the online consultation process. This involved youth from 12 countries. In 2014, 4000 youth participated in CYFI’s global youth survey and 6500 young people were involved in the online DreamsBank campaign.
1.3.9 Economic Citizenship Education
As a result of working group input, Economic Citizenship Education is defined by the CYF Movement as an education which combines:
financial education and
The term “Economic Citizenship” emerged as a suggestion from members of the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child.
This concept evolved with the active participation of over 50 NGOs and Education Service Providers. Members of the CYFI Education Working Group, chaired by UNICEF and OECD, pooled their knowledge and shared their expertise to create the concept of Economic Citizenship Education. They have also created the Economic Citizenship Learning Framework which details key learning outcomes that should be seen in various life stages of children and youth. This framework is used to
Guide governments, NGOs, schools and other service providers who wish to create curricula and programs of social,
financial and livelihoods education.
Allow for organizations who have existing programs to map their learning outcomes against those which are set out
by the framework.
With these efforts, the Movement is ensuring a coordinated collaboration and a unified approach to Economic Citizenship Education globally.
In collaboration with partners within its network, CYFI has created a series of publications that help inform and guide the different efforts within the Movement.
184.108.40.206 National Implementation Plan
A National Implementation Plan for Economic Citizenship for children and youth helps national stakeholders design the implementation of a joint strategy to increase Economic Citizenship for children and youth at the national level. The value of the Plan lies in its emphasis on initiative actualization at the national level, creating a multiplier which extends the scope of its benefits. Through a 6-step approach objectives are set, concrete building blocks are chosen and a detailed implementation plan is developed to address country-specific needs and circumstances for children and youth.
220.127.116.11 Economic Citizenship in Your Country
This manual acts as a guiding toolkit for national authorities, governmental bodies, Ministries of Finance, Ministries of Education, Central Banks, NGOs or concerned citizens to engage and collaborate with other stakeholders in the effort to ensure that every child and youth becomes an empowered economic citizen. The document offers inspiring stories
and examples from CYFI Partners and Network Participants from around the world about how they came together to create regional and national platforms that raise awareness and change policy and regulations to ensure no child is left behind.
18.104.22.168 A Guide to Economic Citizenship Education
This guidebook features the Economic Citizenship Education Framework to guide the creation and assessment of education programs and curricula which are designed to increase the social, financial and livelihoods skills of youngsters. This Guidebook was created for governments, NGOs, schools and other service providers to create curricula and programs of social, financial and livelihoods education.
22.214.171.124 Child and Youth Friendly Banking Discussion Paper
UNICEF and CYFI co-produced a discussion paper titled “Beyond the Promotional Piggybank: Towards Children as Stakeholders.” The paper outlines some of the key challenges, opportunities and risks that major retail financial institutions in OECD countries can encounter when dealing with the segments of children and youth. The paper uses case studies to highlight the various facets of how a Child Rights Integration in Retail Banking could look like. 126.96.36.199 The Child and Youth Friendly Banking Product Certificate
The Child and Youth Finance Movement advocates for increased access to appropriate financial products for children and youth. This Certification Guide describes how to obtain a Certificate and is a guide for the individual(s) within the financial institutions who are involved in the creation and dissemination of products.
This manual was developed with the assistance of Deloitte, Houthoff Buruma and KPMG. The guide provides an introduction to the Certificate and its potential benefits, outlines the Certificate Criteria and Control Framework, outlines the certification process and provides more details on the use of the Certificate.
188.8.131.52 Product Development Guide
"Banking a New Generation: Developing Responsible Retail Banking Products for Children and Youth" is a product development guide which has been developed in collaboration with MasterCard for leading national and international ﬁnancial institutions with an ability to drive significant outreach to children and youth. The Guide is intended to help decision makers, product owners and all stakeholders in the product development process understand the impact of working with children and youth, and to provide guidelines on how to develop appropriate innovative banking and payment products, while respecting and supporting children’s rights.
The Guide has been developed in three parts:
The first part focuses on advocacy, outlining the importance of investing in children and youth. Information that is important to understand and bear in mind when interacting with this segment. The second part provides guidance on children and youth focused product development. It will help product development professionals understand young consumers’ needs and wants. The third part presents several banking products and related programs that are offered by ﬁnancial institutions across the globe.
Through technology, CYFI is examining how existing, new and innovative technology can be used to disseminate Economic Citizenship Education and facilitate financial access for children and youth. One such initiative is CYFI’s SchoolBank project. The project aims to provide safe, low cost and structured ways of saving for children and youth. It advocates applying mobile banking technology or branchless banking technology in creating access to formal channels of saving and using schools (or community centers, non-formal education organizations, etc.) in facilitating the provision of financial access and financial education
1.3.12 Child and Youth Friendly Banking Products
CYFI brought together representatives from financial regulatory authorities and financial institutions to create the criteria for Child and Youth Friendly banking products. From these criteria, a product prototype can be created, which can be further modified by interested financial institutions. To date, numerous financial institutions have used these product criteria to create financial products for youth, mostly savings accounts.
The criteria are also used to assess the levels to which financial products are child and youth friendly. Those products which meet the criteria are provided a Child and Youth Friendly Banking Product Certification.
Additionally, via the Schoolbank project, CYFI is working with telecommunication agencies and mobile operators to explore the creation of web-based products that will allow the Movement to reach out to even the most marginalized child.
The CYFI Secretariat
Facilitating the growth of the Movement by coordinating this global Movement is the work of a dedicated Secretariat, based in Amsterdam. The Secretariat is responsible for promoting and furthering the CYFI Movement by involving an increasing number of partners and contributors to the Network. It provides technical assistance for organizations wishing to implement or develop financial programs and services in their countries. The CYFI Secretariat does so by leveraging the expertise from within its network. Other duties of the Secretariat include certification of Child and Youth Friendly banking products, as well as Economic Citizenship Education assessment. Maintaining an innovative spirit, diversity and a broad range of capabilities is essential to ensure we reach our target of 100 million children and youth.
The Secretariat is made up of a young team, led by leading social entrepreneur Jeroo Billimoria.