With more than 800 million people, Sub-Saharan Africa has some of the highest levels of poverty and the lowest levels of financial inclusion in the world. More than 60 percent of Africans live on less than $2 a day and two-thirds of the world’s poorest countries are in Africa. We began providing support to African microfinance institutions in 2000, and our work on the continent is characterized by a deep commitment to expanding access to financial services.
Today, Accion has partners in Cameroon, Ghana, Nigeria and Tanzania – countries that have large populations, high levels of poverty and very low use of financial services. Our partners are offering loans and savings accounts to individuals who have never had access to financial services before. Moreover, other services offered include ATMs, mobile banking and, most importantly, financial education to help clients understand the advantages and risks of each service. We help our partners in Africa to design new products, train staff and use management tools, such as proper risk analysis, to make sure that these institutions provide the most appropriate, convenient and respectful service possible to their clients.