In these troubled times, we hope that all of you are sound and well, and your friends and families too. As you know, the global crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic is going to have a deep impact on many aspects of our society and our economy. While the consequences are impossible to predict today, it is more than likely that the most vulnerable people will be the most affected ones, in particular those already excluded from the conventional banking system, the people we aim to serve, our clients. Although national governments have announced various measures to
mitigate the effects of the economic slowdown, it will be difficult for these measures to permeate to the level of the small entrepreneurs that make up the vast majority of microfinance’s clients.
Yet initiatives are already blooming all around Europe and Central Asia, implemented by many of you to keep helping your clients in these trying times. Our role as networks, perhaps now more than ever, is to allow these ideas and solutions to flow freely within our memberships. We have started compiling all relevant initiatives that could potentially benefit other MFIs, and therefore make a significant difference in the lives of those we serve. We will be actively promoting those via our channels, starting no later than next Thursday (26/03) at 11:00 CET with
a webinar focusing on how to cope with the pandemic effects on MFI’s businesses: examples from the field. You can already register for this webinar
Other webinars and publications will follow. In the meantime we ask all of you to share with us any action you have implemented, any practical solution, any communications strategy you have used to ensure your client’s economic safety.
Despite our initiatives, the microfinance sector by itself will not be able to tackle all the challenges that the most vulnerable are facing now. That is why we would also like to know about your recommendations to guarantee the sustainability of the sector as a whole, and any other measures that could be disseminated to the main public and private stakeholders in the microfinance sector, in Europe and Central Asia.
Please send your contributions to Kinga Dąbrowska (email@example.com) and Adriana Olmedo (firstname.lastname@example.org), in the meantime both EMN and MFC staff remain at your full disposal for any support you may need.
Thank you in advance. Stay safe, and stay home.
Lucija Popovska Elwin Groenevelt
MFC’s Chair EMN’s Chair