Innovative Practices 2013 on Employment
Making microfinance inclusive
|Name of Innovative Practice:||Making microfinance inclusive|
Banco D-MIRO is leading the way with the credit product Creer, a loan product designed to reach persons with disabilities. Now that it has recently been transformed into a regulated institution, the bank will begin to offer savings products as well as loan products. D-MIRO is quietly leading the way to make financial services widely available to persons with disabilities (PWD) in an unprecedented way. The main characteristics of Creer are:
– Technically the product is the same as a standard microcredit product, but D-MIRO has given it a different branding.
– Creer is marketed by all credit officers and very few special marketing efforts have been carried out. The existence of Creer has spread by “word of mouth”.
– D-MIRO has had very little cooperation and coordination with disabled people’s organisations and has received no external support for the product. Creer is fully D-MIRO’s responsibility.
– According to Banco D-MIRO the main reason for developing Creer was to empower PWD. At the same time products like Creer help the staff, the management and the board to understand ‘the type of institution that D-MIRO wants to be. Creer also gives D-MIRO a good standing in the public and it’s a visible way of practising “social outreach”.
– Finally, targeting disabled people is a market opportunity since no other MFI targets this market segment.
IMPLEMENTATION IN THE FOLLOWING COUNTRIES
D-MIRO belongs to the Norwegian microfinance organisation Alliance Microfinance which also has projects in Vietnam and Bolivia. However, so far, Creer is implemented only in Ecuador. The inspiration for Creer came from the National Union of the Disabled in Uganda (NUDIPU) where Roy Mersland, a board member in D-MIRO, has been involved in projects and research related to PWDs access to microfinance.
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