“The power of men is not determined by the individual but by a collective, because human beings alone are weak creatures” Yuval Noah Harari
Financial literacy is a fundamental cornerstone not only for the social well-being of a country but also for the growth of a conscious civil society and therefore a driving force behind its economic and financial stability.
For these reasons, financial literacy is fundamental: to help individuals achieve adequate security, before starting work, during their working life and after retirement.
For generations between the ages of 20 and 35, this situation seems to be better, but only in certain areas of the country and for socially more affluent environments, which are familiar with digital payments and basic banking activities.
According to the Svimez 2019 report on Southern Italy, the gap between the North and South of the country is increasingly evident: from emigration to the North, to the depopulation of smaller towns, up to the flight of graduates abroad. The gap in employment opportunities compared to other areas of the country and the recessionary data for the South are unacceptable evidence.
On the investment side, the data are no longer comforting: only the construction sector is holding up during the year, while those of companies in machinery and equipment have stopped, compared to +4.8% in the North.
What is much more serious is the level of female employment in the South: at only 35.4% compared to 62.7% in the Centre-North and 67.4% in the EU.
With regard to the above, we have implemented, as Global Thinking Foundation, a series of free digital initiatives and projects available to adult citizens, with the aim of making families and women more aware of their economic and financial potential and supporting them in the conscious planning of their life projects.
Promote and support the emancipation of vulnerable groups of the society in order to avoid relapses in public welfare, thus increasing a widespread feeling of individual responsibility and awareness of the investment choices of their savings, avoid the widespread problem of over-indebtedness and thus combat financial illiteracy.
The commitment of foundations and private associations of civil society, such as GLT Foundation, in Italy as well as in other G20 countries, assist in a strengthened role of active citizenship alongside municipalities and on the territory in order to be able to support the efforts expected from the Government, which has launched a national strategy for financial education, already present in more than 60 countries, which is responsible for a broad and widespread function in the numbers and quality of actions implemented.
This is an important opportunity for Global Thinking Foundation to combat situations of educational poverty by promoting empowerment understood as strengthening, empowerment and awareness, to reduce the knowledge gap in economic and financial skills that is still widespread in our country, and especially in the South.
Widespread financial inclusion needs an important element to achieve effects on the economic development of the country: adequate economic-financial knowledge and a basic level of “economic citizenship” skills, currently lacking in Italy.
The FOCUS SUD 2019-2021 Programme was born on 5 October 2018 in Catania during the event: “How much and what financial education? A behavioural analysis for Italy.”
The event took place as part of the initiatives for the World Investor Week 2018 sponsored by IOSCO (International Organization of Securities Commission) – an association which includes the supervisory authorities of a hundred countries, established in 1983 to regulate the world markets of securities and futures – and with the patronage of the Sicilian Region, the City of Catania and the Presidency of the Chambers of Commerce of Eastern Sicily.
FOCUS SUD 2019-2021 brings together a series of activities that will take place in Puglia, Basilicata, Abruzzo, Molise, Calabria, Campania, Sicily and Sardinia thanks to the support of memoranda of understanding already active in some municipalities of the aforementioned regions and with the regions themselves, and will embrace the issues of Financial Education included in the objectives of economic sustainability of Agenda 2030, (SDGs), in particular for the goals 4,5,8,11, and 12, and addressed to adults from 18+ to 65+ using paper and digital materials of Global Thinking Foundation and AIEF (Italian Association of Financial Educators) certified voluntary teachers of the Women Squared Task Force.
The Project will also make use of the strategic collaboration with FEDUF, the Foundation for Financial Education and Savings for schools and school work alternation, and the experience related to the participation in the working groups of ASVIS and INFE/OECD, International Network for Financial Education.
We launch our Young Adult Project for Sustainable Growth in collaboration with the Keynes High School of Palermo and local universities because we strongly believe in the centrality of engagement with young women, especially in the South, to increase awareness and skills, and encourage the strengthening of their individual and community leadership. It is a great opportunity to strengthen critical thinking and global awareness to start and become protagonists of ethical and innovative choices in future life: professional, civil and political on the path to sharing the principles of Agenda 2030. An opportunity to share ideas and projects that improve the country, the region, the nation in which we live. The hope for these young people is that they can grow a new, inclusive, authoritative, competent and international management class, able to work and to bring out the value of the contribution of all for a better society.
A training experience focused on the theme of Politics as a social service for citizenship, offered by Farm Cultural Park toYoung Women and held in Favara (Agrigento) from March to December.
Global Thinking Foundation has decided to support the first edition of this school by awarding a number of scholarships, as the objective is to inspire a new generation of women by introducing them to the themes of Politics, understood as civil commitment and the “art” of interpreting and guiding society, discussing democracy, social justice, international relations, women’s leadership, universal values and civil rights together with testimonials of great experience and passion active in various professional fields and across all currents of thought with a focus on countries and the international experiences of testimonials.