Making Microfinance Instiutions Disability Inclusive

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Making Microfinance Instiutions Disability Inclusive

United StatesBoston, United States
Organization type: 
nonprofit/ngo/citizen sector
Project Stage:
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

No more than .5% per cent of clients of MFIs are persons with disabiltiies (in spite of the fact that they make make up 15% of the world's population) and the Center is in the middle of testing a roadmap for disability inclusion at Fundacion Paraguaya to prove that clients with disabilities can make good clients and that modifying the MFI to make it fully accessible is not an expensive propositon. What is really innovative about the Center's approach is that we are making a strong business case for disability inclusion, on top of the obvious legal and moral case. With the aging of the global population, and the fact that more than 40 per cent of all humanity has a disability by the age of 60, it is clear that current clients who do not have a disability today may well have one tomorrow.

About You
Center for Financial Inclusion at ACCION
About You
First Name


Last Name



Principal Director for Economic Ctitizenship and Disability Inclusion

About Your Organization
Organization Name

Center for Financial Inclusion at ACCION

Organization Country
Country where this project is creating social impact

, MA, Boston, Middlesex County

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Project description
What are your organization's top three priorities in the next year?

1)To complete the testing and implementation of the Roadmap for Disability Inclusion at Fundacion Paraguaya
2) To Create an open source web portal to disseminate our tools and trainings to the global microfinance industry
3) To begin implementing the roadmap with 3 MFIs partners in India, under the leadership of India Project Manager, Siddhartha Chowdhri.

Your project
Project Support
Need #1

Digital Marketing Strategy

Need #2

Consumer/Audience Acquisition

Based on your first choice of the eight technical categories you selected above, what is your specific project need? Please be specific!

To create a web portal and other digitial platforms to dissemniate our tools and tranings to the rest of the industry and more broadly to make the the industry aware of the inclusion work we are doing. The expertise American Express can bring to the table in developing these digital and marketing tools would be invaluable in achieving our goals. Ignorance is the major roadblock to global replication and sucess and the knowledge sharing a web portal would allow would go a long way to obviating this problem.

What three characteristics or qualities do you prioritize in working relationships/partnerships?





Passion for the mission

Will support from American Express be focused on your organization overall or a specific product/service? Please describe.

Specific communcation and marketing products and services for our disability inclusion project area.

Have you focused on the above area previously? If so, please explain, including whether you have worked with outside consultants before.

No, except conceptually as we have lacked the resources to do this.

Are you able to commit 3-5 hours/wk over 10-12 weeks?


Are you able to meet virtually or at a convenient in-person location?


Are you able to meet in the city where your organization is based?


Rank your three intended outcomes of this project:

Creating an interactive web portal to share our tools and trainings with global microfinance community


Make sure the web portal is fully accesible for persons with a variety of disabilties


Increase the number of MFIS who are actively opening their doors to clients with disabilties.

What has been the impact of your solution to date?

Over the last year we have designed and begun to implement a full roadmap to disability incusion at Fundacion Paraguaya. Sensitivity trainings of FP staff has increased outreach to clients or potential clients with disabilities. An assessment of the built enviroment by a firm that does accessibilty audits has lead to the buildingthe first ramp at FP's headquarters and plans for many more at branches throughout the country in 2013,. Tools to market to persons with disabilities are being developed to do outreach to clients. Finally senior management has made disability inclusion a key priority for the organization from the the top to the bottom.

What is your project future impact after receiving professional support from American Express?

To have a mature,, accesible web portal with a range of tools and trainings that will reach MFIS around the world. The portal will be the place to go for anyone interested in disability will be fully interactive. In additon, American Express will support the creation of digitial marketing materials that will create a buzz around this new portal. The marketing materials like the portal will need to be fully accessible.