In the sustainable development priorities for the next 15 years adopted by heads of states in New York this week, the United Nations has highlighted financial inclusion as an important enabler for poorer households in the informal economies of the global south to increase resilience and better capture opportunities.
The types of financial services that low-income women are able to access have also changed. In 1995, we were still promoting the idea that low-income women entrepreneurs were optimal loan clients. Today, financial institutions are offering savings, microinsurance, digital financial services to rural families, women who work in factories, and women who run larger businesses.
As small business owners in the Philippines, these women often do not qualify for traditional loans and other commercial banking services. They look to nonprofit financial institutions like Negros Women for Tomorrow Foundation (NWTF) for financial services that are specifically designed to help them build their businesses.