Global microfinance nonprofit Accion has announced a $5.4 million grant from the MetLife Foundation to advance financial inclusion for underserved individuals in Latin America, Eastern Europe, and Asia.
With the grant, Accion will launch an initiative, Building Financial Capabilities and Strengthening Institutions Through Customer-Centered Innovations, aimed at transforming financial customer inclusion through new digital tools. To be led by Accion's Global Advisory Solutions team and the Center for Financial Inclusion, the initiative will support regional efforts to design digital tools and services informed by human-centered design; incorporate behavioral principles that empower clients to use those tools; and help financial service providers (FSPs) leverage and use client data to continuously improve their services.
In Latin America, Accion will work with FSPs in Argentina, Chile, and Mexico to design, test, and implement innovations that improve access to financial tools for low-income customers. In Eastern Europe, Accion will partner with the Microfinance Centre to develop and promote digital tools that FSPs can use to diagnose customers' financial health, identify gaps, and develop actionable plans to improve their financial well-being. And in Myanmar, the MetLife Foundation will continue to support Accion's work with entrepreneurs through its DAWN Microfinance program.
"In our work with partners around the world, Accion sees how new products and technologies can help transform financial inclusion for those who have been left out," said the organization's president and CEO, Michael Schlein. "Our latest partnership with [the] MetLife Foundation in Latin America, Eastern Europe, and Asia will allow us to leverage the power of digital financial services and design customer-centered products and services that enhance customers' financial capabilities and engagement."