Beyond micro-credit: the importance of savings products for women, children and youth

 

In some countries, the lack of employment opportunities have constrained people, mainly male, to migrate in search of better living conditions. In certain rural areas, this contributes to create communities populated predominantly by senior citizens, women and children.

This is the case of western Honduras where the MFI Pilarh OPDF is active since 2008. Two years ago, it has implemented saving products projects to sensitize women with no access to financial services to income management, development of entrepreneurship and access to education.

Four saving products are offered, each of which has a specific purpose and is accompanied by incentives that encourage clients to reinforce their saving habits.

  • Baby savings account designed especially for pregnant women;
  • School savings account which is for children attending primary school;
  • Educational savings accounts for teenagers;
  • Entrepreneur savings account for young adults, helping them create their own businesses.

Concretely, it’s more than 500 families that have been supported by PILARH OPDF savings products, 2,150 young adults have become active savers and 63 young entrepreneurs have put their business plans into practice through the financing offered by PILARH OPDF.

This savings project has shown that poor households urgently need a variety of financial products to help them manage their money.

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