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Economic Security

Mwinilunga, Zambia - December 4th, 2012: A market lady presents her products at her stand in Africa.

GSDI defines Economic Security as the ability of individuals, households and communities to meet their basic and essential needs sustainably; including food, shelter, clothing, health care, education information, livelihoods, and social protection. Economic insecurity disproportionately affects the vulnerable, marginalized, and less advantaged around the globe, who face an unparalleled challenging path to financial and economic stability. A stable source of financial income or a productive asset that generates income, allows individuals and households to maintain a decent way of living now and in the future. The absence of economic security drives individuals, households, and communities into devastating poverty and strips them of their dignity and worth.

Income and asset poverty are the reverse of economic security. The World Bank reports that an estimated 700 million people in 2015 lived on less than $1.90 a day – the updated international poverty line. Despite progress, much remains to be done to address poverty across the globe. The numbers provided in the report only reflect the ultra-poor. These are men, women, and children who do not have access to education, financial services, gainful employment, and social protection.

At GSDI, economic security is the focal point of all our work. Our view is that unlocking the potential of individuals, households, and communities to be economically secure, puts them on the path to successfully addressing the challenges they face in a dignified manner. Economically secure people have the flexibility to make choices to enhance their well-being. Poor people, on the other hand, have to make difficult decisions to survive.

Sometimes the choices that poor people have to make require them to make decisions between buying food and buying a bus ticket to submit a job application; between buying quality food to eat and adhering to their anti-retroviral medications and buying more food that is of lower quality to feed their families. Poor people make these difficult decisions every day to the detriment of their well-being.

At GSDI, we engage in developing interventions that will address the mobility of individuals and households towards economic security. We collaborate with local organizations to implement interventions that employ social protection tools, financial inclusion mechanisms, education mobility pathways, health well-being instruments towards economically secure citizens.