As Shakti Foundation’s largest initiative, its Microfinance Program is aimed at ultra-poor urban women within Bangladesh. This program envisions a society where women learn to trust and apply their potential effectively without being constrained by societal limitations.
Since its inception in 1992, the Microfinance program now covers 410 branches across 54 districts, supporting almost 500,000 women. Its clients have received monetary, management, and moral support to become entrepreneurs and skilled workers.
Members are recognized as legal beneficiaries of our organization. They are trained and equipped with necessary and relevant skills, from learning how to sign their own name to opening a savings account. They are also comprehensively educated on all aspects of managing a loan.
The Microfinance program offers a number of services.
Micro Loan schemes are the primary financial support to our members. All members of the Shakti Foundation are eligible for this loan, provided they meet the membership criteria and utilize their loans for income-generating activities. A range is allocated for the scheme with repayments made on a weekly basis.
MICRO ENTERPRISE LOAN
The micro-enterprise loan scheme was introduced after many previous borrowers showed promise as entrepreneurs. To be eligible for this loan, the member has to be at least a second-cycle borrower, have a good standing in the group and the center, as well as have a good repayment history. The procedure is similar to that of the microloan scheme, except the repayments can be made on a weekly or monthly basis.
Savings is an integral part of the microfinance program, which offers its members a number of savings plans. Members make weekly or monthly deposits with Shakti to create a resource base for members to avail in the future.
My Savings is mandatory for all borrowers of Shakti, in order to educate them on the importance of responsibly saving income and ensuring security for the future. My Savings entitles members to save a fixed amount per week with no facilities for withdrawal.
Family Savings is a flexible, voluntary savings plan with weekly deposits. They can choose a fixed amount, adjust their loan installment and withdraw their family savings whenever they choose.
Member DPS is a voluntary savings scheme for Micro Loan members who can save fixed amounts on a monthly basis and withdraw the savings after maturity. For ME loans, this saving scheme is mandatory. Both schemes allow withdrawal with interest if the member decides to leave the organization.
Lakhpati Scheme is a voluntary savings scheme for all Shakti members that gives them the chance to become a lakhpati with a monthly savings of 520 takas in 10 years.
Double savings is a voluntary savings scheme that gives them the opportunity to double their money in 7 years.
Mashik Munafa Shonchoy (Monthly Benefit Savings Scheme) is a voluntary savings scheme that gives everyone the opportunity to get profits of monthly 900/- taka per 1 Lac savings.
Shakti Foundation also grants loan waivers upon the death of a member for her outstanding loan amount, and the registered nominee receives her deposited savings.