Child and Youth Finance International (CYFI) has recently published a network brief with the aim to point out how Economic Citizenship for children and youth is crucial in reaching the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and sub-targets by 2030.
The main pillars of Economic Citizenship are Financial Inclusion, Financial Education and Social and Livelihoods Education. Financial inclusion is access to safe, appropriate, and affordable financial services. Financial education includes instruction and/or materials designed to increase financial knowledge and skills. Social education is the provision of knowledge and skills that improve an individual’s understanding and awareness of their rights and the rights of others. Livelihoods education builds one’s ability to secure a sustainable livelihood through skills assessment and a balance between developing entrepreneurial and employability skills.
Achieving the SDGs
CYFI believes that seven of the SDGs are particularly relevant to Economic Citizenship for children and youth: SDG1 (End Poverty), SDG2 (Good Health) SDG 4 (Quality Education) SDG 5 (Gender Equality) SDG 8 (Good Jobs and Economic Growth) SDG 11 (Sustainable Cities and Communities) SDG 16 (Peace and Justice). The network brief shows how every pillar is contributing to the improvement of these goals and many of their sub-targets.
The network brief is characterized by a particular focus on children and youth: they represent the future economic actors that will influence the future of the world economies with their financial decisions. CYFI supports the idea that all children and youth must have the possibility to realize their full potential as economic citizens, which is fundamental not only to the well-being of young people of but also for the prosperity of families, communities and countries.
Public attention on the SDGs is gaining momentum and CYFI wants to be an active player this global discourse, especially as it relates to the economic opportunities and sustainable livelihoods of children and youth. Young people must be involved in the strategies to achieve the SDGs in order to influence society, raise awareness, promote active engagement and encourage new research.
It is critical that governments and policy makers take into account the importance of Economic Citizenship for this important age group in order to satisfy the 2030 Development Agenda and ensure that no one is left behind.
Author Letizia Binda is a master student of International Business and Economics at the University of Pavia and is completing a summer internship in the Thought Leadership and Consulting Department and CYFI in Amsterdam.