Third Meeting of CYFI Regional Working Group for South-Eastern Europe held in Kosovo

The third meeting of the CYFI Regional Working Group for Youth Financial Education and Financial Inclusion for South-Eastern Europe took place on 5-6 October in Pristina, Kosovo. The 2017 meeting was hosted by the Central Bank of the Republic of Kosovo, in cooperation with Kosovo Bankers Association and the Development Facility of the European Fund for South-Eastern Europe.

The meeting brought together more than 25 international participants-members of the Working Group from across the region, including representatives of the central banks, other financial regulators, ministries and educational authorities, as well as more than 40 local stakeholders interested in advancing financial education and financial inclusion agenda in Kosovo.

Participants discussed trends and developments in advancing financial education and financial inclusion national agendas and policy, specific programmes and initiatives targeting children and youth in the countries of the region, plans for the future, and exchanged the experience and best practices in targeting the youth segment. 

The CYFI Secretariat as also presented the publications, work and regional research from the field, including the joint CYFI & EFSE DF publication on "Insights into Financial Behavior and Knowledge of Children and Youth in Selected Countries of South-Eastern Europe". The study was conducted in the second quarter of 2016 and included in-depth focus groups and interviews with children and youth between 10 and 24 years old, as well as wide quantitative study of more than 2,000 children and youth people across 7 countries of the region. The full report of the research is available here

Mastercard representatives participated as guest speakers to the Working Group meeting, and presented the recently launched by CYFI & Mastercard Guidelines on Safer Payment Products for Minors, as well as opened the discussion on the role of both private and public sectors in promoting youth financial literacy by facilitating the access to digital financial products in a safe and responsible way.

The meeting also saw the Launch and Inauguration of the National Financial Literacy and Training Center of the Central Bank of Kosovo, the new facility that was recently renovated and re-opened in the ancient city of Prizren, with the support of EFSE. The Working Group members also had a chance to visit and have a tour around the Center's facilities on October 6th.

The Central Bank of Kosovo (CBK) has also awarded a special recognition to Child & Youth Finance International for outstanding contribution in the advancement of financial education agenda in Kosovo. CBK's contribution to bringing the national stakeholders together and promoting financial education for children and youth was recognized by Ms. Shkendije Himaj, Coordinator for General Function in CBK, as well as an important role that the Working Group plays in promoting the best practices in the field across the countries of the region, and how they can learn from each other's experiences.

About the Working Group

The Regional Working Group for Youth Financial Education and Financial Inclusion serves as the place for sharing best practices, exchanging experiences, identifying technical assistance opportunities to support action plans development and implementation by CYFI Secretariat and its network. As of June 2017 more than 24 governmental institutions from 10 countries of the region (central banks, financial regulators, ministries of finance and education) are members of the Working Group. 

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CYFI took part in FINFIN 2017 in Moscow in February 2017

Child & Youth Finance International (CYFI) took part in FINFIN 2017 Conference in Moscow, Russia on 16 February 2017. FINFIN is an annual international symposium, aiming to bring together financial institutions, governmental bodies, and expert community to exchange and share best practices and latest trends in the area of financial literacy and financial inclusion.

The Conference fosters an open dialog between market practitioners, government officials and researchers. It also provides an ideal environment to develop new initiatives that would ensure sustainable development of the industry, increase the availability and quality of financial services for the population, and promote financial literacy programs in order to improve the well-being of Russian citizens. 

The conference is traditionally organized by Russian Microfinance Centre and Citi Foundation, with the participation of representatives of the Bank of Russia and Ministry of Finance of Russian Federation, as well as international experts. The 2017 edition of FINFIN saw participation of many global stakeholders in the field, such as OECD, Central Bank of Portugal, UK Consumer Panel, CYFI and other representatives from CIS region and beyond. 

In 2017 CYFI contributed to the panel on the ways to improve financial literacy of Russian population, alongside the speakers from the Central Bank of Russia, Moscow State University, and various private sector initiatives. The wide consensus was reached that starting teaching children the basics of financial behaviour, such as saving, budgeting and spending, is essential from the first years of school. The role of the Ministry of Education in this process was defined as crucial by all participants of the panel. CYFI Regional Advisor Karina Avakyan shared the recent findings of financial education landscape for young people, emphasized the importance of active practicing of savings from the young age, and presented the recent publication by CYFI and World Savings Bank Institute (WSBI) on various Schoolbanking models.

On 15 February 2015 CYFI was also invited to take part in the informal roundtable, organized by the Russian Microfinance Centre (RMC) and Bank of Russia on the financial literacy programmes for SMMes and entrepreneurs, and their role in the overall financial literacy strategies and policies. CYFI representative shared some examples and best practices from CYFI network members and other countries in Europe.

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Scaling and Sustaining Youth Financial Services within the Microfinance Sector

​There continue to be challenges in convincing financial institutions that there is a viable business case to be made for significantly investing in Child and Youth Friendly Banking Products the provision of services for young clients around the world.

CYFI presented on this topic at the European Microfinance Summit in Barcelona, Jan 26-27th, along with the Mastercard Foundation and other leading European microfinance institutions and associations. The purpose of the conference was to share innovations in digital finance, social protection , environmental stewardship, financial literacy and client outreach in the microfinance sector. 

Participants were introduced to the components of Child and Youth Friendly Banking and the insights gathered from CYFI's advocacy and youth product development work around the world. CYFI was the only organization presenting on financial products for under 18s and participants were interested in hearing about how they could better serve this important demographic. Using the CGAP Business Case Framework for youth financial services, participants explored many of the aspects that contribute to the business case for Child and Youth Friendly Products:

  • Market Level Levers (government regulation, market competition)
  • Institutional Levers (opportunity costs, institutional commitment/resilience, time frame)
  • Segment Specific Levers (urban vs. rural youth, in school vs. out of school, online vs. offline)
  • Profitability Drivers (marketing, product design, product delivery model and operational support)

Drawing on the 2015 European Microfinance Platform Publication, CYFI was able to show the results of a case study analysis demonstrating how youth financial services have a greater probability for scale and sustainability when they are offered to older youth in urban areas, within a strong, facilitative macroeconomic environment and with the dedicated support of the institution's Management Team and Board. 

Innovation solutions to mobile banking or e-learning, and adopting a critical minimum approach to tailored financial literacy, can also help boost scale and sustainability of these products and services.

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First phase of SchoolBank pilot conducted in Georgia

The National Bank of Georgia (NBG) and CYFI have collaboratited on promoting SchoolBank in Georgia since late 2015, when NBG presented the concept to all commercial banks in the country. Since then CYFI and NBG have developed a standard 14-hour financial education module, monitoring and evaluation system and conducted a teacher training on active learning methodologies. Currently NBG is working with educational authorities in Georgia to get SchoolBank module as an extra-curriculum class in Georgian schools.

The first commercial bank to join the SchoolBank pilot, with their own educational module as well as innovative financial product for children was Bank of Georgia. Bank of Georgia has launched a sCool card in September 2016. sCool Card is a socio-educational program for students, aimed to improve financial literacy of the younger generation and to instill financial culture among children.

Schooling on financial literacy

The Bank has developed a comprehensive training module - sCool Card Business School – the school of financial literacy. The module covers lots of information  from social, financial and essential livelihoods education. The training program includes 5-6 training courses on various topics, which are held in schools every two weeks. The University of Bank of Georgia developed the training program, together with child psychologists, and it was approved by the Ministry of Education and Science of Georgia. Pilot trainings were held from October to December 2016 in 10 schools in the capital city, Tbilisi. Recently, at the end of January 2017, the first 175 graduates of the Business sCool Card were awarded certificates and souvenirs by the Bank.

Moreover, the Bank has distributed more than 100 000 debit sCool cards in Tbilisi, which also provide students with free public transportation. For 2017, the Bank is looking at further developing the educational module, strengthening the savings component of the programme, and expand the programme to other regions of the country.

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Youth to Talk Money with Policy Makers

Child and Youth Finance International’s 3rd Annual Regional Meeting for Europe and Central Asia (ECA) will bring together policy makers, financial service providers and children and youth from the region to discuss innovative ways to responsibly and sustainably include the young generation in their national economies.

Amsterdam, the Netherlands – Child and Youth Finance International's (CYFI) 3rd Annual Regional Meeting for Europe and Central Asia (ECA) will be hosted by the National Bank of the Republic of Macedonia in Skopje, Macedonia from October 2-3, 2014. Regional leading policy-makers, financial institutions, experts, practitioners and innovators who are engaged in the issues of children and youth’s financial inclusion, financial education, employability and entrepreneurship opportunities will attend to share success stories and challenges. The objective of the meeting is to strengthen and align financial inclusion, economic citizenship education and entrepreneurship initiatives for youth in the region.

Senior representatives from Ministries of Education, Ministries of Finance, Central Banks, children's rights organizations, multilateral agencies, and educational and financial institutions are confirmed to attend.

65 children and youth from across Europe and Central Asia will present to the policy-makers their action points for creating appropriate and sustainable youth economic opportunities. By ensuring youth are included as active participants in the decision-making process we believe that the policies shaped will be more youth-focused and inclusive, and the youth themselves will be more inclined to agree with the policies as they helped create them.

CYFI and the National Bank of the Republic of Macedonia are honored to announce the following confirmed speakers:

Mr. Dimitar Bogov, Governor, National Bank, Macedonia
Mr. Zoran Stavreski, Minister of Finance, Macedonia
Mr. Dime Spasov, Minister of Labor and Social Policy, Macedonia
Mr. Vahdettin Ertas, Chairman, Capital Market Boards of Turkey
Ms. Eija Hietavuo, UNICEF
Ms. Susana Narciso, Banco do Portugal
Mr. Michal Skowronek , MasterCard

Links and Information

The full Meeting Agenda can be found here

Press Releases for the meeting will go out:
Wednesday, September 25 – Pre-meeting
Monday, October 6 – Meeting Outcomes

Social Media

Relevant Social Media Accounts:
@ChildFinance | @ChildfinanceCIS | @CYFIYouth

ECA Regional Meeting Hashtags:
#CYFIMacedonia |#CYFIYouth

Other related Hashtags:
#finlit#entrepreneurship#youth | #financialeducation | #financialinclusion

About the National Bank of the Republic of Macedonia

The National Bank of the Republic of Macedonia is a central bank and only bank of issue in the Republic of Macedonia. Its primary objective is to maintain price stability.

In 2012 the National Bank of the Republic of Macedonia launched a project titled "Financial Education" to inform the citizens of the Republic of Macedonia about the finances and the economy. Brochures, manuals, cartoons and other educational materials are developed, printed and distributed to the public. The project is contributing to the general wellbeing of Macedonia’s citizens and economy.


About Child and Youth Finance International

Child and Youth Finance International (CYFI) aims to develop a generation that will be able to prevent future financial crises by increasing the financial education, financial access, employability, and entrepreneurship skills of children and youth.

Launched in April 2012, the Child and Youth Finance Network has already expanded to 125 countries and reached more than 18 million children. Our international and regional events result in policy changes, and are the only events in the world where children contribute to setting the global agenda.


Press Contacts

For further information about any of the mentioned events and/or Child & Youth Finance International, please contact:

Caitlin Watson, Communications Coordinator
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
+31 (0)20 520 3900

Robin Willing, Director of Communications & Operations
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
+31 (0)20 520 3900

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Webinar: Savings and Retail Banks and Youth Financial Inclusion

Join us on Thursday, March 13 at 2:00 - 3:00 PM CET, as Child & Youth Finance International will be co-hosting a webinar with the World Savings Banks Institute (WSBI), on how retail and savings banks are working to ensure the financial inclusion of youth around the globe.

Taking from the example of WSBI member Microbank (Spain) which through La Caixa offers a complete package of financial services to youth, global trends, challenges, and opportunities will be explored around financially including youth. WSBI, the global association of savings and retail banks, supports their members’ activities on financial inclusion including youth and has seen increasing efforts over the past years by its members. WSBI is monitoring evolutions worldwide and channels experience in order to help boost these common objectives. Join us for an engaging discussion with WSBI and Microbank.

This webinar is part of Global Money Week (GMW), the annual global awareness week (10-17 March 2014) organized by CYFI and its partners and stakeholders. GMW creates awareness with children, youth, parents, and teachers around economic citizenship education and financial inclusion for children and youth.

Registration Details

Topic: Savings and Retail Banks and Youth Financial Inclusion

Date: Thursday, March 13, 2014

Time: 2:00 - 3:00 PM CET

Registration: Click here to login

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Summary of the last day of the CYFI Regional Meeting at the ECB

The last day of the Second Annual CYFI Regional Meeting for Europe and Central Asia truly went in the sign of celebration and was closed with great excitement, as European Central Bank President Mr. Mario Draghi gave a closing speech about the importance of financial inclusion and education for the health of the society and the region and got awarded by the youth of the region as the ‘Financial Inclusion Champion’ in Europe and Central Asia.


Mr. Draghi opened his speech by commending the youth representatives on their great efforts and stated the importance of child and youth financial education and inclusion saying:

” While education in general is critical for the health and wealth of society, so is financial education. In the modern world, wherever you live, it is essential to have the skills and knowledge to manage your money and to know at least something about how the economy works. If you have that knowledge, you are more likely to have your own bank account and can then make savings or even borrow money and set up a small business. You are connected to the world around you.”

The speech by Mr. Draghi followed the presentation by the youth representatives with proposals on how they think the ECB can help in fostering financial education and inclusion for children and youth. The youth also invited Mr. Draghi to take part of the celebrations of Global Money Week 2014. A smiling Mr. Draghi thanked the youth for the extent of invitation and said that he would be glad to try to join the celebrations.

The presentation of proposals hade been prepared by the 25 youth delegates form the 12 different countries during the course of the meeting, but represented the voices of 100 000 youth from all over the world, that had participated in giving input for the proposals presented via social media. The issues presented upon were Employment and Entrepreneurship, Financial Inclusion and Economic Citizenship Education. The calls for action were clear:

  • Introduce tax reduction for young entrepreneurs and entrepreneurship in the school curriculum.

  • Every child graduating from primary-school should have the right to have a bank account.

  • All school curriculum should include Economic Citizenship Education.

In response to these calls for action Mr. Draghi stated that youth are calling for action on the same points that Europe is calling for: transparency and access to financial services and bank accounts. He further stated his support of the issues that the youth addressed, and that he goal of the ECB; a truly European banking sector with a European banking union, could be a platform to implement youth financial inclusion.

We sincerely thank Mr. Draghi for his support and congratulate him on being awarded by the youth as ‘Financial Inclusion Champion’ in Europe and Central Asia.

Youth sessions


© ECB/A. Böttcher   

Earlier on Tuesday European and Central Asian leaders cold also engage with the youth on their ideas for their future as financially included, educated and entrepreneurial citizens of their countries. The discussions on three core matters: financial inclusion, financial education and youth entrepreneurship.

“We believe in ourselves, we want you to believe in us too. We want to be financially empowered, so please listen to our suggestions.”


Financial Education

They youth on the stage representing the young people of their countries told the audience that many of their peers still do not know that the subject of financial education exists, and that we need to change this.

“We need to know in order to be passionate, and we need to be passionate in order to be good at what we are doing.”

They also addressed that many children and youth have a lack of self-confidence and independent thinking, and that we need to empower them and build their confidence to make sure that they will believe in themselves and in their own decisions. One representative stated: “School have been made easy to go through without learning about real life skills”.

This was a point that they wanted to change. One suggestion to do this was to introduce internship to the school curriculum to make sure that the young people build their confidence and get to experience real life situations.

Another point that was made during the sessions was the fact that current financial education is focusing too much on macroeconomics, but is missing the private financial issues.


An issue that was raised is that there is currently little access to information about entrepreneurship and how to become an entrepreneur. There is also insufficient access to start up funds. One possible solution for this that was suggested by the youngsters was to engage more crowd funding to raise funds for young entrepreneurs and their endeavors. Another call for action form the youth was that the subject of entrepreneurship needs to be introduced to the school curriculum. This subject should focus on developing entrepreneurial skills and connect traditional subjects like math to an entrepreneurship setting.


Financial Inclusion

The third topic of financial inclusion, that the youth had named ‘Re-shaping for inclusion’ focused on how to make youth more financially included and what they found necessary in order to make this happen. They stated that increasing financial inclusion for children is essential for them to be empowered. A point that was made by the youth presenting was that if they are able to spend at a certain age – why not be able to save at the same age?

Financial inclusion and education: the last mile

Mr. Panagiotis Strouzas, Head of the Financial Services Policy Division at the Directorate General Financial Stability of the ECB chaired this session, which brought together several themes and discussions from the past two days, including key themes during the Youth/policy-maker dialogue during the morning. Mr. Stouzas started by emphasizing the seminal role of financial literacy and inclusion for children and youth towards financial stability.

Mr. Bram Stoffele, Partnership and Certification Manager at CYFI, and youth representatives Mr. Kirill Akhmetov and Mr. Bogdan Baciu reflected on the state of child and youth financial inclusion in Europe and Central Asia. Observing that financial access levels differ greatly throughout the region and statistics for child and youth access are scarcely available, they argued that financial access needs to be complemented by independent financial capability training and quality standards for child and youth friendly banking products to ensure real financial inclusion.


They finished by presenting preliminary results of a CYFI survey of banking products and educational programs for children and youth which seems to corroborate the view that most child and youth banking accounts currently don’t fulfill these requirements, and financial education programs offered currently by financial institutions often lack a holistic perspective or sufficient safeguards for independence.

Ms. Tracey Bleakley, CEO of Pfeg (UK), shared the success story of child and youth financial education in the UK. Through the concerted efforts of the Personal Finance Education Group (Pfeg), schools and children, government, and the financial sector, financial education is now top on the political agenda. In February 2013 the government took the decision to integrate financial education in England’s national secondary education curriculum. Reflecting on next steps, Ms. Bleakley commented that ‘maybe we should get over ourselves’ and accept that children and youth already engage with the financial system in many ways (e.g. through prepaid mobile phones and internet transactions), and that their safe financial inclusion would be a logical step, provided parents can decide when their children can be given greater financial autonomy.

Mr. Hidde van der Veer, Aflatoun, concluded the session, emphasizing the importance of providing children and youth with a more holistic concept of economic citizenship education, moving beyond financial education only, including life skills and livelihoods education. 


The final session of the day was devoted to Global Money Week, and how the countries of the region can join in on the celebrations of Global Money Week March 10-17 in 2014. The session started with an introduction by Mr. Dakic, Governor of the Central Bank of Montenegro. Mr. Dakic shared with the delegates how the Central Bank of Montenegro had celebrated Global Money Week of 2013 with activities of the ministry of education and the central bank such as visits to the money museum and workshops for students. He ended the introduction by stating:

“It is obvious that a lot of work is ahead of us, and there are still some steps to be taken to ensure financial inclusion – Global Money Week is one way of doing this. I strongly believe in its success.”

Luís Vas, Head of Financial Literacy Unit at the Bank of Portugal presented on the rationale for promoting both financial education and inclusion, and the importance of events such as Global Money Week in order to do this. He pointed out that Global Money Week and similar events is key for Bank of Portugal to help promote the importance of financial education and inclusion. Mr. Vas also shared what the Bank of Portugal had learned from arranging Global Money Week and similar events. 

Philippe Racine, Founder and CSO, Ekomini Inc., was the second panelist to present, and addressed how technology can be used to engage children and youth to learn about money matters. 

The Republic of Macedonia was the winner of the Global Money Week award for Europe and Central Asia of 2013. Ms. Kristina Nikolovska, Assistant to the Governor of the National Bank of the Republic of Macedonia, shared the story of how they celebrated Global Money Week, which went under the slogan “Learning By Playing”. She expressed why it is important for countries to engage in Global Money Week by pointing out that it is a way to rise the level of financial literacy among youth, while at the same time rise awareness of the importance of being financially literate and included. She further stated that Macedonia are committed to take part of Global Money Week 2014 and make it even bigger than 2013.


© ECB/A. Böttcher   

During the last part of the session three youth representatives presented the ideas that they had come up with together with the other youth at the meeting for how they wanted to celebrate Global Money Week 2014. The ideas presented included involving universities all over the world in TEDx Talks, involve social media channels, having a school week dedicated all the subject to finance and money matters, entrepreneurial contests and challenges as well as a Global Money Week song and having children teach their parents about financial inclusion and education.

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Daily Digest of the CYFI Regional Meeting for Europe & Central Asia at the ECB

Daily Digest of the CYFI Regional Meeting for Europe & Central Asia at the ECB



Daily Digest: Day one from the CYFI Regional Meeting for Europe & Central Asia


The first day of the Second CYFI Annual Regional Meeting for Europe & Central Asia started off with a bang on Monday morning! We are very excited to share the day with you! With this Daily Digest of the meeting we would like to share the day in short with the rest of the Movement.

fb_logo twitter-bird-white-on-blue 2 GooglePlus-Logo
Follow the Meeting on Social Media! The designated hashtag for the event is #CYFIEurope. 

Tuesday 2.30 p.m.
Join in for the live streaming of the closing speech
by ECB President Mr. Draghi 


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Welcome Speech
European Central Bank (ECB) Vice-President Vítor Constâncio who opened the meeting with a welcome speech. In his speech Mr. Constâncio acknowledged the ECB’s role in ensuring financial inclusion to the European youth, and the ECB commitment to the issue:

“The European Central Bank plays a direct role in achieving the objectives of financial inclusion.” - Mr. Constâncio, Vice-President, ECB

Mr. Constâncio emphasized the long-term benefits for both youth and their communities to understand financial literacy & inclusion, as he argued that it will not only affect the lives of youth themselves, but also the financial stability and economic growth. At the same time he also addressed the challenges that are still to be overcome for youth financial inclusion. He also pointed out the opportunity to listen to the opinions of the 25 youth participants on the meeting. “It is rare for us to hear the opinion of youth, and I think we should listen carefully”. He continued saying: “Our children have enormous potential, we need to help them fulfill it”.

Inaugural Session
At the Inaugural Session the governor from the National Bank of the Republic of Macedonia, Dimitar Bogov and the governor of Bank of Albania, Ardian Fullani, as well as UNICEF Director for Europe and Central Asia, Philippe Cori and the chairman of the Capital Markets Board of Turkey, Mr. Vahdettin Ertaş, took the stage together with CYFI founder and managing director Jeroo Billimoria. 

One of the great surprises of the morning was the announcement that the Republic of Macedonia will be hosting the next CYFI Regional Meeting for Europe and Central Asia in 2014. 

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The session also focused on sharing all the great commitments and initiatives that have been made by Albania, the Republic of Macedonia and Turkey. Mr. Ertaş, further stressed the importance of financial inclusion for Turkey, as well as four Europe and Central Asia as a region.

In addition to explaining the commitment to financial literacy and inclusion by the Bank of Albania, Mr. Fullani, shared his personal experiences with children and youth in Albania and how they have inspired the continuous engagement for such initiatives.

Mr. Cori from UNICEF further pointed out the UNICEF commitment to ‘social cohesion’ and the great importance of financial inclusion, connected to social inclusion, to make sure that children and youth grow up to be empowered adults. During his speech he proclaimed:

We need to invest in our youth today!” - Mr. Cori, UNICEF

He pointed out that we need to start considering youth stakeholders of our society. He also stated that children are drivers of change of our society, and the inclusion and empowerment of youth is, and will continue to be, a key priority of UNICEF and the UN.

Celebrating the Movement
The second session, ‘Celebrating the Movement’, was moderated by Mr. Koen Vermeltfoort, Partner at McKinsey & Company. During the session another great announcement was made. Mr. Joseph Falzon, Dean of the Faculty of Economics, Management and Accountancy who was representing the Ministry of Education from Malta, proclaimed the commitment of the Ministry of Education of Malta to fully support and collaborate with CYFI with promoting and implementing financial education.

He further addressed financial inclusion as a mean to make sure that all children and youth grow up with equal access to the tools to lead happy and successful lives, independent of their background or circumstances. Representing the Ministry of Education from Malta, Joseph Falzon, Dean of the Faculty of Economics, Management and Accountancy stated: “Inclusion means that we positively help all disadvantaged children and young people to be able to start the marathon of life at the same starting line.”

During the session Mr. Marin Molosag, First Deputy Governor, National Bank of Moldova stated his support of the Movement and of its goals. He ellaborated, stating that financial literacy is a form of wider self interest, promoting financial literacy is a public good. 

The returning topic of the day was the still present financial crisis and its effects on the European countries. But it was also raised as an important influence on the progress we now see for financial inclusion and financial education initiatives all over the region. Eva Zamrazilová, Board Member of the Czech National Bank described how the current financial crisis has brought about a mind shift regarding the importance of financial literacy and inclusion: “Before the crisis, many people considered financial literacy to be a topic of marginal importance. The crisis has changed many things, one of them being attitudes to financial literacy.”

Mr. Kornél Kisgergely, Deputy State Secretary for Financial Policy Affairs from the Ministry for National Economy in Hungary also referred to the financial crisis, and its affect on the Hungarian community. Referring to a quote from a professor in finance he also raised the need for financial literacy in order to make sound financial decisions: “If somebody tells you can make a fortune in financial markets without taking excessive risk – he is a fool, or he thinks that you are a fool.”


Creating an integrated policy for youth economic citizenship in Europe and Central Asia
The third session of the day was on how to create an integrated approach for youth economic citizenship. Moderated by Chris Sier, Director at Financial Services Knowledge Transfer Network, the session became a dynamic and interactive part of the morning where many of the delegates gave their views on financial education, inclusion and the complexity of integrating initiatives to policy.

Panelists were Ms. Catherine Fagan, Chair of the International Association for Citizenship, Social and Economics Education at the University of Glasgow and Mr. Anatoly G. Gavrilenko, Chairman of Expert Group on Financial Education from the Russian Federation.


Ms. Fagan opened the session by stating the importance of getting together and meeting face to face to connect, share and inspire each other to keep promoting further initiatives for financial inclusion and education. Mr. Gavrilenko shared the initiatives being made by the Russian Federation, and the increased awareness of the importance of such initiatives.


As the delegates were able to pose their questions to the others in the room, a question regarding financial literacy to prevent the next financial crisis came up. This started a long discussion regarding the importance to not consider isolated parts as the single solution to a complex problem, such as the financial crisis. Even though many agreed on the importance of financial literacy to prevent irresponsible financial behavior, it became clear that education alone will not be the answer. Instead it need to be a integrated solution that not only make sure that youth grow up being financially literate but also have the values and understanding of their role in their community.


During the remaining part of the day delegates were involved in Workshops moderated by McKinsey & Company. The workshops presented the delegates with the opportunity to actively engage in discussion and come up with questions on the topic at hand. The details of the topics and panelists of the workshops are presented below.

Integrating economic citizenship education into the school curriculum
Miroslava Salavcová, Head of Department of Pre-school, Basic and Basic Art Education, Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports, Czech Republic
Michaela Dlouhá, Head of the Financial Literacy Working Group, Ministry of Finance, Czech Republic Pranvera Kamani, Head of Sector for Curriculum and Textbooks, Ministry of Education, Albania
Besa Prela, Head of Communications, Bank of Albania

Enhancing financial capability: the value of combining financial education and financial inclusion
Michael Chapman, Senior Policy Expert on Consumer Protection, OECD
Mark Fiander, Strategy and Innovation Director, Money Advice Service, United Kingdom
Anna Zanghi, Head of Global Innovation and Product Development for Youth, Mastercard

Financial inclusion policies and regulation for young people: gaps and recommendations in the EU context
Maciej Berestecki, Policy Officer, European Commission Jürgen Klute, Member of European Parliament Sébastien de Brouwer, Executive Director, European Banking Federation
Armenuhi Mkrtchyan, Head of Consumer Protection and Market Conduct Division, Central Bank of Armenia

Teacher training capacity-building
Angela Cara, Coordinator, National Institute for Educational Sciences, Moldova
Vanessa Nowak, Teacher Training Expert, My Finance Coach

Innovative outreach models for economic citizenship education through formal and non-formal education Mustafa Özer, Financial Education Program Manager, Youth for Habitat, Turkey
Ligia Golosoiu, Counsellor, National Bank of Romania

Policies encouraging youth entrepreneurship: how to develop a greater entrepreneurial culture among young people in Europe
Darja Saar, Chief Executive Officer, Entrum Foundation, CENTRES, Estonia


The day ended with a dinner for all the participants, hosted by Ignazio Angeloni, Director General of the European Central Bank. Mr. Angeloni gave a warm welcoming speech were he spoke about ECB’s ambition to fight unfulfilled opportunities and talents of today’s youth through financial education.

The last day of the meeting, on Tuesday November 5th will focus on voicing the opinions and suggestions the 25 youth participants have been working on during Monday, celebrating Global Money Week, as well as have the honor of a closing speech from Mario Draghi, ECB President. 

Join us for the live streaming of the closing speech
by Mr. Mario Draghi, President ECB


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The European Case: Financial Inclusion & The Prevention of the Next Financial Crisis

The European Case: Financial Inclusion & The Prevention of the Next Financial Crisis

Just a few days ago we celebrated the World Savings Day. But there are still many people who are excluded from the formal financial services and bank accounts. According to a newly made study by MasterCard, the population of unbanked and underbanked totals 93 million people in Western Europe alone.

Other studies has shown that only 31.9% of youth in Europe between the ages of 15 – 25 hold an account at formal financial institutions. This means that almost two thirds of Europe’s youth are currently left out of the formal financial institution market.

As the financial services offered become increasingly complex, there is an even greater need to make sure that the people who will grow up to make the financial decisions, are educated and experienced enough to do so.

Coming up next week, 4-5 November, is the Second CYFI Regional Meeting for Europe & Central Asia. The meeting will take place at the European Central Bank and is a great opportunity to inspire and inform others of the great social and financial winnings attached to making sure that our next generation of adults are financially included and educated.

The recent financial crisis has shown us that the decisions made by the adults of today will affect the financial landscape of the future. It is our responsibility to make sure that our children, who will be the adults of tomorrow, are well prepared and educated to make sustainable and favorable decisions for themselves and their countries.

But how do we prepare them to make the ‘right’ decisions?

The Child and Youth Finance Movement promote two things to make this happen: education and inclusion. We need to make sure that young people have sufficient and proper education on financial matters. But the Child and Youth Finance Movement also believe that we need to make sure that the education is connected to inclusion, to create good habits at an early stage.

So what does it really mean, Financial Inclusion? It is about being included, not excluded. Being empowered. Having access. We need to make sure that our children and teens are a part of the financial services and system that will be the venue for some of the most important financial and life decisions they will ever make. We need to make sure that the habit of saving instead of lending, earning interest on savings instead of keeping your money at home, are things that will affect their lives and those of others in many ways.

This has been, and continues to be, one of our greatest challenges. Giving all children access to a bank savings account and safe financial services should be part of the fabric of our financial systems. Financial institutions should recognize this is their role in the financial system, their corporate social responsibility, and simply the right thing to do. Facing the issues of financial inclusion in Europe and Central Asia constitutes a challenge in itself.

Since the European and Central Asian region consists of such a diverse group of countries, there are specific challenges and opportunities within each country that needs to be approached in the local context. There is no ‘fix all’ solution that can be applied to all the countries of the region. Instead there is a need to move together as one, but keep the solutions and efforts on a local level to meet the local needs.

And this is what the Child & Youth Finance Movement is trying to do. Since we launched our Global Movement in 2012, we have already spread to 100 countries and reach 18 million children with financial inclusion and education. This great progress has been made possible through aligning the efforts of countries and organizations to work together toward the same goal: increase the economic citizenship and financial inclusion of children and youth all over the world.

The Child Finance Movement builds on the notion that by aligning and supporting the efforts being made by isolated actors we can achieve great change in a short amount of time.

One part of aligning these efforts is through our Regional Meetings were we bring together policymakers and leaders of the region with young people to discuss and take action for the future generation of their countries. With the current situation and all time high statistics in the European and Central Asian region, it seems as though this year’s meeting is as relevant as ever.

There is a need for nations to join together to build change within their local context, but also cross borders. In order to change the future of our youth we need to start working together. We need to start learning from each other, as well as support and inspire others to make changes that go beyond the actions themselves.

Like the rings that spread over the water, we can make great things happen if we only drop a stone big enough. It is our goal to make sure that every child and youngster in Europe and Central Asia are included, a part of, their own financial landscape and are educated to be so. Are your ready to help us pick up the stone and spread the rings?


Follow the Meeting via #CYFIEurope, and tune in for the live streamed closing speech by Mr. Mario Draghi, European Central Bank President.


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Countdown to the upcoming CYFI Meeting at the ECB

Countdown to the upcoming CYFI Meeting at the ECB



The countdown for the CYFI Second Annual Regional Meeting for Europe & Central Asia has started!


Follow the Meeting on Social Media! The designated hashtag for the event is #CYFIEurope. 

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Have you signed up for the meeting? Registration is still possible here 

The countdown has started for the Second Child and Youth Finance International Regional Meeting for Europe and Central Asia! 

This year we have the privilege to co-host the Meeting with the European Central Bank in Frankfurt am Main, Germany 4 -5 November. The meeting is shaping up to be a game changer for children and young people in Europe. 

Meeting Delegates
The meeting, featuring closing remarks by European Central Bank President Mario Draghi and inaugurated by Vice President of the European Central Bank, Vítor Constâncio, will bring together leading experts, practitioners and innovators from within the region engaged in issues of increased child and youth financial inclusion, economic citizenship education and youth entrepreneurship.

We are honored to announce the following confirmed speakers at the meeting:

Ardian Fullani - Governor, Bank of Albania 
Dimitar Bogov - Governor, Central Bank of Macedonia 
Eva Zamrazilova - Board member, Czech National Bank 
Evarist Bartolo- Minister of Education, Malta
Ignazio Angeloni- Director General of Financial Stability, European Central Bank
Jorgovanka Tabaković- Governor, National Bank of Serbia
Marin Molosag - First Deputy Governor, Central Bank of Moldova
Philippe Cori- ECA Director, UNICEF
Vahdettin Ertas - Chairman, Capital Market Boards of Turkey

Additionally, 30 youth participants representing the opinions of 1500 youth throughout Europe will present action points on how they want to Reshape their own and Europe’s Financial Future.

Subjects that will be addressed during the Meeting include

  • Celebration of the Child and Youth Finance Movement;
  • Creating an integrated policy for Youth Economic Citizenship in Europe and Central Asia;
  • Financial Inclusion;
  • Global Money Week 2014;
  • Dialogue between youth, policy makers and practitioners

There will also be several workshops on Financial inclusion policies and regulations, Integration of Economic Citizenship Education in school curriculum, Innovative Financial Education outreach models, as well as Policies Encouraging Youth Entrepreneurship.

The full Meeting Agenda can be found here


Have you signed up for the meeting?
Registration is still possible 


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