Promoting Financial Inclusion
for Women at the Last Mile
a2i’s Multi-pronged Approach
a2i acknowledges the three essential steps toward achieving Women’s Economic Empowerment (WEE): ensuring access to financial services, protecting women’s resources through formal financial services, and empowering women to make independent decisions through resource control.
Women-led Last Mile Agent Network- SATHI
a2i established the Sathi network, a dedicated women-led agent network spanning across the country, to ensure convenient access to financial services for marginalized women at the last mile. Women agents in rural areas foster a sense of trust and comfort among female customers, enabling them to engage more confidently in financial transactions. The gender-specific intervention promotes financial inclusion and empowering un/underbanked women in a safe and supportive environment.
The SATHI Network engages in a range of activities to empower women at the grassroots level
Raise Awareness and Develop Capacity
a2i focuses on raising awareness and building capacity in the following areas
Support Pro-poor Product Innovation
a2i plays a facilitative role in supporting fintech startups and financial service providers in funding, mentoring, regulatory issues, and technical assistance, specifically to address women-specific needs throughout the product development process. a2i aims to foster an enabling environment for fintech and financial service providers to develop gender-responsive solutions and contribute to women’s financial inclusion.
Produce High-quality Evidence and Knowledge for Decision-making
a2i strives to generate reliable and robust evidence, providing valuable insights for informed decision-making for policymakers. By focusing on producing high-quality knowledge and engaging in discussion, a2i empowers stakeholders with data-driven information to drive effective policies and strategies.
Aims and Target Audience
a2i and Bangladesh Bank (Central Bank of Bangladesh) jointly convened a policy advocacy forum to promote sustainable Financial Inclusion for Women called Women’s Financial Inclusion Advocacy Forum (WFIAF). The collaborative platform formulated with regulators, academics, researchers, practitioners, and financial service providers (FSP).
Accelerate women’s economic empowerment through nancial inclusion by catalyzing knowledge generation, fostering best practices and sector collaboration.
The intervention areas of Forum (WFIAF) include
Aims and Target Audience:
Within the framework of the Sathi Network, women-led financial service delivery points have been introduced in Bangladesh. These points act as crucial hubs offering a wide range of financial services to women at the last mile.
This initiative aims to:
The primary target audience of the initiative includes marginalized women residing in remote and underserved areas of Bangladesh. These women often face barriers in accessing formal financial services due to geographical, cultural, social and economic constraints. The initiative aims to empower these women by providing them convenient access to financial services, enhancing their digital and financial literacy, and promoting economic empowerment.
The Sathi Network engage in a range of activities to empower women at the grassroots level:
Establishment of Women-Led Financial Service Delivery Points:
The initiative involves setting up physical service points in remote areas, staffed by dedicated women agents. These points serve as accessible hubs where women can perform various financial services for instance, bank account opening, savings, loans, payment, mobile money transfers etc.
Capacity building programme for Women Agents
To enhance the capacity of women agents, the initiative conducts training programs that cover digital financial services, customer service, communication skills, and problem-solving. These workshops equip agents with the skills required to serve their communities effectively.
Financial literacy programme
The initiative organizes different literacy programme such as workshops, awareness campaigns, yard meetings, account opening & service campaigns etc. to improve the digital and financial literacy of marginalized women. These programmes teach marginalized women about the benefits of digital transactions, the safe use of mobile financial services, and basic financial concepts.