The Citi Foundation supports the economic empowerment and financial inclusion of low-and moderate-income people in communities where Citi operates. We work collaboratively with a range of partners to design and test financial inclusion innovations with potential to achieve scale. We also seek to support leadership and knowledge building activities. We put the strength of our business, resources, products and people to work to help improve communities. We describe this as a "More-than-Philanthropy approach", which includes support for program development and skill-based volunteering.
In 2004, Citi was the first global bank to announce a 10-year commitment to meet the growing financial education needs of the communities we serve. Although we completed our $200 million commitment in 2010, our work is not done. We learned that the most effective financial capability programs not only build financial knowledge and skills, but also provide ongoing coaching and access to appropriate financial products and services to motivate positive changes in financial behaviors.
The Financial Capability Innovation Fund is managed by the Center for Financial Services Innovation with lead funding from Citi Foundation. It supports new strategies for increasing the financial capability of low-income and underserved consumers throughout the U.S.
The fund will provide financial and technical assistance to innovative nonprofits that open access to the financial products and educational tools people need for increased financial stability. It will also help catalyze change across the financial capability field by directing practitioners toward resources and practices that achieve improved financial outcomes for low-income consumers.
The Citi Foundation is committed to maintaining economically vibrant communities in the U.S. We do this by increasing the flow of capital to low- and moderate-income communities to:
Despite a rise in income and assets, 43% of Chinese urban families are without long-term wealth planning strategies.
This was the main finding of the first survey of the Tsinghua-Citi Financial Education Hub. Established in 2008 with a $1.2 million grant from the Citi Foundation, the Hub's mission is to improve the understanding of financial behavior among Chinese consumers.
The Hub's first survey covered 5,000 middle and low-income urban households and looked at their financial behavior, planning and education needs. The results were presented at a series of meetings with officials and opinion formers.
With continued funding from Citi Foundation the Hub's second survey of urban households, started in 2010, will focus on the current knowledge, use and understanding of the risks and opportunities of financial products, how the households acquire financial information and what they need to manage their assets.
We support educational and training opportunities that lead to improved employment prospects, increasing young people's ability to contribute to the economy.
In countries where completing secondary school is the critical milestone, we focus on efforts to help students develop the knowledge, skills and attitudes to earn a living wage, start their own business or pursue further education and training. In countries where obtaining a degree is critical, we focus on increasing the number of low-income students who enroll in and complete post-secondary education.
Citi Foundation supports microfinance institutions and other nonprofit organizations that seek to increase the supply of financial products and services. We aim to identify innovations to assist institutions to achieve scale and financial sustainability, providing products for consumers to build their assets while increasing environmental sustainability.
Micro and small enterprises are powerful engines of economic growth and jobs. The Citi Foundation supports these enterprises by investing in organizations to build their institutional capacity and increase their access to capital.
A college degree is critical to breaking inter-generational cycles of poverty, increasing young people's earning power and helping them contribute to the economy. We aim to dramatically increase the number of first-generation students - and those from low-to moderate-income families - who obtain a degree.