Letter from the editor on the FT’s Financial Literacy and Inclusion Campaign
The FT’s seasonal appeal on behalf of a charity has raised more than £19.5m over 15 years and supported many worthy causes. Over the past year, we have been working on a more ambitious project that will replace our seasonal appeal: today we launch FLIC, a new charity to promote financial literacy and inclusion around the world. Our hope is that with you, our readers, we can make an ongoing impact in an area that is consistent with our values and expertise.
The data on financial literacy is shocking. According to the World Bank, two-thirds of the global population are not financially literate and the correlation between financial illiteracy and deprivation is plain. Despite unprecedented fiscal relief measures, the fallout of the Coronavirus pandemic has forced millions in the developed and developing worlds into financial insecurity. Financial resilience has never been more important.
Over the coming weeks, FT writers will report on different aspects of financial literacy and the least literate groups: young people, women and disenfranchised groups such as migrants and refugees. Young people are a particular priority. As governments withdraw financial aid, the young have been plunged into job insecurity, while children and students have suffered severe disruption to their education.
Instilling children with confidence in numeracy sets them up for financial resilience in the future. I believe all children (including my own) should study maths until the age of 18, but you don’t have to be a maths whizz to be financially literate. In our charity launch film, FLIC director Aimee Allam and the FT’s consumer editor Claer Barrett met with students at a school in Manchester to deliver a pilot workshop on financial risk.
In FT Money this weekend, Patrick Jenkins, the FT’s deputy editor who has been the driving force behind FLIC, reports from Middlesbrough in the north-east of England, illustrating the widening wealth gap in economically deprived regions of the UK. Finally, we look at how financial education can provide a lasting legacy.
I know you will read the stories with great interest and hope that you will support our campaign, whether financially or by offering your time and expertise. To learn more and to donate, please head to FLIC’s website.
Thank you so much for your support.