Sa-Dhan to Host Microfinance Conference in New Delhi

Sa-Dhan, an association of community development finance institutions in India will host a National Microfinance Conference in New Delhi on March 31, 2009. The conference is centered on the theme, ‘Microfinance Ecosystem: Equilibrium Between Growth & Effectiveness’.

One of the goals for this event is for Sa-Dhan member organization to come together with academicians, practioners and policy makers to strategize on ways to overcome issues plaguing microfinance in India, such as “commercialization of microfinance institutions (MFIs), governance, risk management, provision of holistic microfinance services (like savings, microinsurance, livelihood, etc), resource mobilization and credit crunch and cost of services”.

The conference is set to bring the policy makers, mainstream financial institutions, donors, financiers, practitioners, academicians, researchers, parliamentarians and international participants in one platform. Amongst others, the conference would specially focus on Effective Microfinance, Linkages, Opportunities, Gap in Governance, Ethics/Values, Code of Conduct etc.

Some of the speakers at the conference include Prof. Muhammad Yunus of Grameen Bank and Ms. Ela Bhatt of SEWA Bank. More information on the conference can be found here, and the registration form is available here.

Midday Newsfeed

  • The UNDP is organizing its 6th annual forum of the World Alliance of Cities against Poverty (WACAP) from March 26 – 28th to “engage municipalities on local plans of action in reducing poverty through fostering local democracy.” Various facets of poverty expected to be addressed by participating municipalities are sanitation, child mortality, maternal mortality, diseases (particularly HIV/AIDS), and gender gaps.  Source: ProPoor
  • Yesterday, Intel donated 300 PCs to Chattisgarh to “enable government-run schools to reap full benefits of effective technology integration in teaching and learning.”  Intel is also actively training uninitiated teachers to integrate technology into their curriculum by conducting “refresher courses, enhancement workshops, technology workshops, and principal seminars.” 
  • A recent study shows that black carbon, “emitted from biomass burning, diesel engine exhaust, and cooking fires” has a “warming effect in the atmosphere three to four times greater than prevailing estimates.”  The leading contributors of black carbon emissions are India and China, contributing approximately 25 to 30% of the world’s emissions. 
  • The Citi Foundation recently launched their “Citi Network Strengthening Program,” a three-year, $11.2 million program in collaboration with Small Enterprise Education and Promotion Network (SEEP) to “advance the integration of microfinance into the mainstream economies of developing countries.”  Participating networks include Sa-Dhan (India).
  • In an attempt to combat the the effects of globalization, climate change, and natural disasters, the Kerala state government has decided to implement a pension scheme for farmers.  The scheme is called Kisansree, and will provide insurance cover to farmers free of cost.