YoDecido and HOPE
Digital financial inclusion tools
A systems approach
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Combining tech & finance to create convenience
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Innovative solutions to the high cost of tech & high customer demand
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Catalyzing the Market
Understanding the need for rapid assistance to Peru and Ecuador, the WOCCU Economic Inclusion Project, with funding from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), is implementing an ambitious and innovative approach aimed at providing economic opportunities and financial services to assist both Venezuelan migrants and refugees and their host communities, particularly in Lima, Peru, and Quito and Guayaquil, Ecuador. During phase one of the Economic Inclusion Project (EIP), initiated in June 2020, 109,679 individuals obtained formal financial services and 15,120 individuals received financial education and literacy training.
Field Officer Banking
WOCCU’s partner financial institutions deploy field officers that travel by motorbike to hard-to-reach villages, bringing financial services through smartphones. The field officers form small groups and meet in person with members to collect deposits, loan applications and payments, and sign up new members. Because of this direct contact, previously unbanked individuals become more trusting of financial institutions and begin to access finance and savings. In Mexico, 54 credit unions with 235 points of service (POS) in 22 Mexican states are implementing field officer banking. These financial institutions brought financial services to more than 250,000 marginalized people within three years, which surpassed the program’s target of 15% market penetration.
In Colombia, the field officer banking model has brought affordable and convenient financial services to more than 253,000 low-income, unbanked people, including Afro-Colombians, indigenous groups, farmers, displaced people, and small and medium enterprises in rural and underserved areas.
Shared IT Systems
Shared networking solutions enable financial institutions to improve their business processes and operations, allowing them to improve product and service delivery to their customers. This includes shared branching, core banking services (software hosting) and payment platforms.
In Haiti, we provided a grant to KOTELAM, a 73,243-member credit union, which enabled them to support critical IT upgrades needed to offer increase point-of-service options for current and potential customers. The grant was used to interconnect all their branches which enabled KOTELAM to provide real-time processing and expanded members services.
In Kenya, WOCCU is working with financial institutions to develop ICT solutions for reaching down-market, which will expand the outreach of financial institutions, reduce the cost of providing financial services to the poor, and create more innovative delivery vehicles for improving access to financial services and market information in rural areas. As of June 2017, all seven participating credit unions were using external providers for automated telling machines (ATMs) and mobile banking channels to reach more members.