Pilot on Financial Literacy and Women Empowerment (FLWE) in 4 states

PSIG through its Financial Literacy & Women Empowerment (FLWE) projects has imparted composite training on Financial Literacy and Women Empowerment issues to women clients of 20 partner MFIs. Adopting a training of trainer approach the trainings were imparted by 184 Master Trainers (MTs)/community resource persons directly to 1.39 lakh women clients over a period of 15-18 months. With the help of a national resource agency trainings were delivered to MTs who in turn trained women clients of partner MFIs. Key features of the program include:

  • Development of gender integrated Financial Literacy modules. Existing financial literacy material in public domain only focused on the financial aspects, ignoring gender differentials & intra-household inequalities in access & control over resources that affect women’s financial behavior. PSIG FLWE modules address this issue.
  • Intensive 26 days of residential training to master trainers in 3-4 phases over a period of 12 months.
  • Delivering trainings to women clients in 3 phases/modules in 30 hour sessions spread over 12 months.
  • Mass Awareness Camps to mobilize and create awareness in local communities about Financial Literacy and facilitate interaction of women clients with banks and formal financial institutions.
  • The project leveraged technology by adoption and use of mobile and tablets based MIS for real time data collection and monitoring of trainings.
  • Baseline and end line survey of each project conducted for impact evaluation.
  • Additional trainings given to women on use of digital payment modes during the demonetization phase

Outcomes and impact of FLWE pilots:

  • The projects successfully trained 1.39 lakh women directly on financial literacy and women empowerment issues in 4 states of PSIG
  • Creation of cadre of 184 strong resource persons (men and women) on Financial Literacy and women empowerment issues at the grass roots
  • Findings from impact evaluation of FLWE pilot project in UP & Bihar of 40,000 sample size highlighted:
    • Increased awareness of women clients about household savings and insurance of clients and reduced subscription to dubious financial schemes (from over 31 per cent to 2 per cent).
    • Women reported increase in confidence in dealing with financial institutions, government departments and police.
    • FLWE training participants reported a higher access to toilets with water. 45 per cent of the respondents in the treatment group reported access to a toilet with water as against 29 per cent for the baseline group and 31 per cent for the control group.
    • Partner MFI’s more likely to institutionalize the FLWE approach within their operations as trained clients are likely to manage their household finances better and manage their cash flows effectively to ensure that the repayment of installments is made on time.
    • Improved awareness of rights and entitlements under government schemes and marginal increase in ownership of productive assets.
    • The FLWE pilot has demonstrated a business case for MFI’s to take up FLWE trainings as part of their own portfolio thus promoting social and financial inclusion through profit making entities and the private sector.