Digital Financial Literacy as a Key Factor in Women Achieving Financial Wellness.
As we celebrate this year`s International Women`s day on 8th March, 2023 under the theme: “DigitALL: Innovation and Technology for Gender Equality”, it is important to reflect on the role played by digital finance in enhancing access to financial services for women at all levels. Women need to be empowered to attain the knowledge and skills needed to navigate digital finance platforms so as to improve access and manage finances effectively hence contributing to their journey to achieve financial Wellness.
When you think of the term Financial Wellness, what comes to your mind?
Financial wellness is a state of being in which you can meet all of your current and future financial obligations while feeling confident about your financial future and making decisions that allow you to enjoy life.
Challenges women face that derail their ability to attain financial Wellness
Inadequate Financial Literacy; Women with little financial literacy are less confident in their abilities to manage their cash flow and are less willing to take financial risks. Improving financial literacy abilities, such as understanding how to handle personal funds, can help to overcome this obstacle.
High digital illiteracy levels; Absence of fundamental digital skills and information on how to utilize digital financial services such as mobile money and online banking prevents some women from readily accessing financial services, particularly in rural regions.
Insufficient Savings for Retirement; Women are less likely to report having longer-term investment, which can have substantial financial impacts on their long-term ability to manage expenses.
Income disparities & Discrimination; Women are more likely to have low household incomes than men due to the wage gap, occupational segregation, and unequal caregiving burdens, among other factors.
Social norms; Societal beliefs that women should not own property or be involved in financial decisions. Some countries have enacted inheritance laws which favour men over women, reducing women’s access to family assets.
“It is an age-old fact that women are better managers than men when it comes to money management”. As FRIENDS Consult, we believe that continuous capacity building for women on how to use digital finance platforms, learning personal finance management, and advocating for better policies that empower women can help women access and manage their finances better, save for future uncertainties, and invest at an early stage, thereby transitioning to financial wellness.
Happy International Women`s Day
Joseph Sserunjogi & Anthony Ochieng-FRIENDS Consult LTD