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Financial literacy education within a developmental social work paradigm

Engelbrecht, Lambert K. (2008)

Please cite as follows:

Engelbrecht, L. K. 2008. Financial literacy education within a developmental social work paradigm, The Social Work Practitioner-Researcher, 20(1):3-20.

The original publication is available at


A multitude of institutions worldwide offer financial literacy education as an indispensable set of life skills, which enable vulnerable people to survive financially in a globalised environment. As poverty alleviation is a fundamental outcome of social work employing a social development approach, financial literacy education programmes in partnership with other providers are of interest to social workers in South Africa. The aim of this article is to review the literature in order to examine links between the theory and practice of financial literacy education and the developmental social work paradigm within the South African context. Consequently relevant concepts, content and outcomes of financial literacy education programmes are elucidated. The article concludes that financial literacy is a positive empowering experience, helping people to manage their financial affairs, which is beneficial to both their financial and social well-being and fits the parameters of a developmental social work paradigm.

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