Trickle Up and MetLife Foundation partner to deliver an innovative socio-economic program to empower ultra-poor families living in rural India
MetLife Foundation has awarded a US$1.1 million, 3-year grant to Trickle Up to help 100,000 households in eastern India to overcome extreme poverty
INDIA, March 16, 2016 – Trickle Up, an international non-governmental organization (NGO), announced today a new grant from MetLife Foundation that will deliver high-quality financial inclusion programs to hundreds of thousands of families in the rural states of Jharkhand, Odisha and West Bengal.
The three-year, US$1.1 million grant will fund the formation of an eight-member alliance of Indian community-based organizations and Trickle Up. The alliance will serve as a resource hub to share best practices and lessons learned about financial inclusion and the integration of people living in extreme poverty into the formal financial system. In addition to bringing together NGOs working towards financial inclusion for the extreme poor, this alliance will help equip one of the world’s largest governmental economic development agencies, India’s National Rural Livelihoods Mission, to provide financial education, skills and connection to formal institutions for hundreds of thousands of people whom they are not typically able to reach.
Worldwide, more than 836 million people live in extreme poverty on the equivalent of less than US$1.90 a day. 70% are women, and other vulnerable populations are overrepresented including children, scheduled castes and tribes, and people with disabilities. Of those, 400 million are “ultra-poor,” and lack basic access to adequate food, shelter, health, sanitation and education. “The ultra-poor have two primary issues: food security, and they do not have an economic situation where they can have continuous employment,” says Amalendu Pal, Asia regional representative of Trickle Up. Improving these conditions can be challenging because they also lack access to productive assets and formal financial services delivered by regulated institutions.
Trickle Up and the alliance will engage 100,000 rural households in an innovative economic and social empowerment program called the Graduation Approach where they receive seed capital to jumpstart a business, learn financial and business management skills, and come together in groups to save and access credit and link to banks and government financial programs. “We want to push them to take one step, that transformative step, to break out of the vicious cycle of poverty so that they can start an enterprise.” says Maitreyee Ghosh, Trickle Up’s state program coordinator for Odisha. Through the program, women living in rural villages gain regular income, financial skills, confidence and social connections with one another.
MetLife Foundation has committed to invest $200 million over five years to reach millions of the world’s poor with access to the financial knowledge and quality products and services they need to build financial security and better lives. “We are pleased to support Trickle Up’s work providing the poorest people with not just the tools, but with the hope of escaping poverty and achieving what we all want: better futures for our children, families and community. PNB MetLife also supports projects on education and development of underprivileged children across the
country,” said Tarun Chugh, MD & CEO, PNB MetLife.
About Trickle Up
Trickle Up has been a pioneer graduating people out of extreme poverty, and since 1979, has helped more than one million of the poorest, most vulnerable people achieve greater economic self-sufficiency. Trickle Up works through local partners and in partnership with large institutions and governments to provide women and other vulnerable populations with business training and financial education, seed capital to start or expand a business, regular coaching, and integrates them into savings groups. Trickle Up works in rural India, the Americas, the Middle East and North Africa, and West Africa. To learn more, visit www.trickleup.org.
About MetLife Foundation
MetLife Foundation was created in 1976 to continue MetLife’s long tradition of corporate contributions and community involvement. Since its founding through the end of 2015, MetLife Foundation has provided more than $700 million in grants and $70 million in program-related investments to organizations addressing issues that have a positive impact in their communities. Today, the Foundation is dedicated to advancing financial inclusion, committing $200 million to help build a secure future for individuals and communities around the world. To learn more about MetLife Foundation, visit www.metlife.org.