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Delivering Financial Health Globally

In the last two decades, substantial progress has been made towards advancing financial inclusion for the world’s most vulnerable people. Since 2011, 1.2 billion people across the globe have obtained a financial account. Most governments now have a financial inclusion strategy and deliver government payments through the formal financial system. Youth, women and other historically marginalised groups are accessing and using financial products and services on a more regular basis.

That said, the COVID-19 pandemic has deeply exposed the weakness of our economic and social systems. People all over the world, especially low-and moderate-income (LMI) people are losing their jobs and seeing their income and assets erode.

In light of these vulnerabilities, there is a need for an approach that examines and advances the well-being of individuals and households. Financial health is an emerging topic of research, advocacy and practice that aims to understand, measure and ultimately improve the part of wellbeing that is associated with the financial lives of individuals.

This white paper by the UNCDFP aims to create a baseline from various discussions on financial health and builds an evidence base from the work done by institutions and individuals globally.

The UN Capital Development Fund makes public and private finance work for the poor in the world’s 47 least developed countries (LDCs). With its capital mandate and instruments, UNCDF offers “last mile” finance models that unlock public and private resources, especially at the domestic level, to reduce poverty and support local economic development.