Financial Inclusion Action Plan

In March 2018, we officially became one of 30 ‘trailblazer’ organisations taking action to improve financial inclusion in Australia by launching a Foundation Financial Inclusion Action Plan (FIAP).

We're proud to be part of this collective action occurring across business, government and community to reduce financial exclusion and support everyone to build their financial resilience.

We're now the first organisation in Australia to take our FIAP to the next level by launching Australia's first-ever Build FIAP.

Why is a FIAP important?

It’s tough to be in financial stress. People in financial hardship can find it not only difficult to access the essential services they need, but financial stress can have a profound impact on their social and emotional wellbeing.

Wannon Water’s FIAP is one practical way we are working towards our strategic direction of going beyond water for strong communities.

Build FIAPs have two components – leadership actions and core commitment actions.

Our plan includes a leadership action to improve the quality of tap water for the Portland, Port Fairy and Heywood communities which will contribute to positive health outcomes and reduce the financial impacts on households and local industry.

Some of the core commitment actions include:

  • Reviewing and updating financial assistance and high water usage policies
  • Focusing on water efficiency measures
  • Aiming to increase the value of spend with social enterprises, disability enterprises and Aboriginal businesses
  • Working with regional suppliers to increase their capability to tender for Wannon Water works and services.
FIAP cover

About financial exclusion

  • More than 2.4 million people in Australia are experiencing severe financial vulnerability.
  • One-in-three Australians (30.4%) suffer from significant financial stress, leading to anti-social behavior, relationship conflict, sleep loss and symptoms of depression
  • Some groups are disproportionately represented amongst those experiencing financial vulnerability, for example single parents, young people, women, people with disabilities and their carers, people from diverse cultural backgrounds
  • Being financially excluded puts people at greater risk of poor social, economic and health outcomes.
  • Low income is not the only cause of financial exclusion. An estimated two million women in Australia have experienced financial abuse - a form of family violence that negatively impacts a person financially and undermines their efforts to become economically independent (Restoring Financial Safety 2015, Camilleri, Corrie & Moore).

What we’re doing

  • A FIAP outlines the measures an organisation will take to strengthen financial inclusion and resilience for large numbers of people, including their employees and customers experiencing exclusion and hardship.
  • The measures in FIAP are designed to deliver tangible, measurable outcomes that will make a significant difference to financial exclusion in Australia.
  • The FIAP is a key step in addressing Australia’s G20 commitments to promote sustained and inclusive economic growth, and reduce inequality.

For more information on the FIAP program, visit the Good Shepherd website.

If you are one of our customers and are experiencing financial stress, please contact us to discuss how we can assist you.