Financial Inclusion of Excluded Segments: Learning from Experience Delivery of Financial Services to People with Disabilities
This case study seeks to highlight the urgency and need to enhance access to financial services to persons with disability (PwD). It focuses on a unique initiative undertaken by the Center for Financial Inclusion at Accion International to provide lessons to the microfinance industry on understanding the needs and aspirations of PwD. The study also discusses how a few conscious methodology changes by MFIs can go a long way in assisting financial inclusion of this customer segment. It is primarily based on secondary literature and the study documents the progress and lessons learned through the initial phases of the initiative. Key lessons include:
- Persons with disability would like to be treated as ‘normal’ and that they are able and capable to access financial services;
- Commitment of MFI board and management is quintessential to drive efforts for enabling outreach to PwD;
- Having persons with disability as part of team has helped MFIs to improve staff understanding about disability and provide inputs to create an enabling environment for PwD;
- Investment in programs and institutional facilities that provide learning and skill building opportunity for the excluded must be undertaken and promoted.