Financial Inclusion for Youth: Reaching the Next Generation
1250 Eye Street, NW
Washington, DC 20005
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Making Cents International
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Half of the world's 6 billion people are below the age of 25. Eighty-five per cent of these young people live in the developing world and face limited opportunities for education, asset building and employment. Making Cents International, along with a growing cadre of international and local organizations including BRAC and the SEEP Network, believes that providing young people with tailored financial services at the right times in their lives and with the right support services can help them improve their education and livelihoods in the short term, and position themselves for more sustainably productive lives in the long term.
This After Hours Seminar will highlight promising practices from BRAC's integrated approach towards empowering youth in Bangladesh and Sub-Saharan Africa, learning from SEEP's Practitioner Learning Program (PLP) on Reaching Scale in Youth Financial Services, and Making Cents' approach to creating practical tools and resources for developing quality financial services for the next generation. Panelists will use practical examples to address some of the driving questions in this nascent sector including:
- How are youth-inclusive financial services similar to or different from other financial services offered to low-income markets in the developing world?
- How does a holistic approach address the multiple needs of younger clients, what are the operational realities and challenges involved with taking such an approach?
- What are the key drivers, determinants and challenges for achieving scale in offering youth-inclusive financial services?
Global Youth Economic Opportunities Conference
September 7-9, 2011 | Washington, DC
Greenroom Interviews: Key Takeaways
Lara is an experienced microfinance practitioner with over 10 years of professional experience including monitoring and evaluation of microfinance institutions, market research, and new products, including the development of financial services for youth in Bolivia. As Making Cents' Director of the Youth-Inclusive Financial Services Linkage Program (YFS-Link), she is responsible for moving forward the program's vision, leadership, planning and implementation.
Prior to joining Making Cents, Storm managed youth-centered initiatives at Pro Mujer and supported strategic planning, documentation of best practices and collaborated between staff across five Latin American countries to share learning and address common challenges. Storm also served as microfinance accreditation specialist at Catholic Relief Services, was a sovereign and structured finance analyst at Fitch and has consulted with Women's World Banking, the World Bank and PlaNet Rating.
Santhosh Ramdoss currently works with BRAC USA, the US office of BRAC, the world's largest development organization. Since 2008, Santhosh has provided strategic support for BRAC to scale-up its microfinance and micro-franchising initiatives in Uganda. BRAC Uganda is today the largest microfinance provider and NGO in the country, touching the lives of more than 1.8 million people.
Ramdoss is also one of the co-founders of ThinkChange India, a popular online platform tracking the field of social entrepreneurship in India. In 2007, Santhosh co-founded Profits for People which won the NYU Stern Social Venture Competition and today has been spun off as an independent social business, manufacturing compostable plates in Southern India.
Ramdoss holds a MBA from one of the top business schools in India and an MPA from NYU Wagner Graduate School of Public Service, where he was also a Catherine B. Reynolds Fellow in Social Entrepreneurship.
Ashleigh Mullinax is an international development practitioner with a wide range of experience in financial services, youth, food security, agriculture, monitoring/evaluation, and knowledge generation. Mullinax is currently a Program Manager at The SEEP Network for the Innovations in Youth Financial Services Practitioner Learning Program (PLP) and the Youth and Financial Services working group, initiatives that aim to facilitate discussions among youth financial service practitioners to generate best practices and lessons learned. In addition, Mullinax manages SEEP’s Rural Agricultural Finance and Food Security PLP and has been responsible for the production of five innovative electronic learning products examining linkages between rural finance and food security.
Prior to joining SEEP, Mullinax worked at ACDI/VOCA and provided backstopping, monitoring/evaluation, and new business support for their Food Security portfolio. She holds a Master’s Degree in Anthropology/International Development from The George Washington University.