July 8, 2015, Dang – At an event organized in Ghorahi, Dang today, Sakchyam Access to Finance Programme and Nepal Women Community Service Centre (NWCSC) launched a partnership – Promoting Economic Opportunities of Rural Families by Enhancing Access to Financial Services in Underserved Areas of Rapti Zone.
The partnership will open 5 new NWCSC branches in Rolpa, Rukum, Salyan and Pyuthan, targeting women, marginalized groups and households affected by the civil war. These branches will continue to provide NWCSC’s various savings and loan products, adapt existing products and services and/or design new products depending on specific client needs. To align their beneficiaries with improved financial services, financial literacy campaigns – to help beneficiaries make informed financial decisions, as well as technical training – to allow locals to start SME/MSMEs, will be launched. The districts NWCSC will work in are Dang, Rolpa, Rukum, Salyan and Pyuthan.
Development in Nepal’s mid-western region was stunted by a long running civil war which resulted in the destruction of crucial infrastructure and a plunge in indicators such as standard of living, health, and education levels. Getting the region back on its feet will require access to financial services that cater to the specific needs of the communities in the region including its marginalized groups, women, youth and conflict affected households.
Speaking at the event, Ms. Bimala Yogi, Chairperson, NWCSC said, “Nepal Women Community Service Centre has been providing financial services for rural poor and creating meaningful impact in the region for a long time. We are happy to partner with Sakchyam to further increase ourreach and cater to specific communities. “
Outlining the area’s potential, Chief Guest, Mr. Puspa Raj Shahi, Local District Officer, Dang said, “Mid-western districts of Nepal, such as Dang, have immense potential for development through value chains such as goat farming and vegetables; the area’s ginger is among the world’s best. Working on such value chains will allow the region to prosper and improve the livelihoods of its people.”
Talking about Sakchyam’s role in the partnership, Mr. Baljit Vohra, Sakchyam Team Leader said, “At Sakchyam, one of our interests is empowering local institutions that are doing significant work in the financial sector – such as Nepal Women Community Service Centre – and support them in reaching out to rural populations with financial services that can transform the region’s economic landscape and consequently improve its livelihoods. We are very excited about this partnership and expect to see excellent results outcomes from NWCSC’s work.”
Sakchyam is an Access to Finance initiative that is funded by UK aid. It is implemented by Louis Berger for DFID in Nepal, in partnership with local and international institutions.