Labour Pains: Discovering the Financial Lives of Zambian Mothers

  • March 29, 2019

  • Publications, guides and communication materials


This report summarizes research organized by the UN Capital Development Fund (UNCDF). Based on the hypothesis that Zambian mothers constitute a unique user group (similar to farmers, refugees or small-business owners) and the facts that almost 75% of Zambian women between 15 and 49 years old are mothers and 33% of Zambian women become mothers by age 18 (Zambia with ICF International, 2014), UNCDF sought to learn more about this segment—across income levels, age groups and geographies—and to deepen its knowledge of and enhance the data on Zambian mothers’ financial behaviours.

The report pays particular attention to low-income mothers. This focus coincides with the mandate of UNCDF to improve access to financial services for low-income populations in its focal countries and addresses the reality in Zambia that, of the 59% of the population that is rural, 76% is considered low-income (World Bank, 2012). By better understanding Zambian mothers’ specific financial and non-financial needs and challenges, providers can develop and refine DFS to better meet their unique requirements.

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