By way of a fun, Girls’ Clubs held an array of workshops, competitions, trainings, a Girls’ Leadership Forum and a colorful rally replete with song and dance. Girls aged 10-16 also were introduced to a group savings program that has proven so effective for their mothers. Initially, the money the girls save will be deposited in their mothers’ group savings accounts. Girls will receive their own passbooks and their mothers’ groups will determine the interest rate paid on the savings.
This innovative approach taken by DHAN to educating and empowering girls in financial literacy is part of a financial inclusion program run by the Reserve Bank of India that has been integrated into the Girls’ Clubs supported by WomenStrong. Girls will carry out savings activities during their monthly Adolescent Girls’ Group meetings. Systems and procedures for savings will be fine tuned over time, under the watchful eye of leaders from the women’s Self-Help Groups.
For the last 12 years, the DHAN Foundation through its Sustainable Healthcare Advancement (SUHAM) Trust has run an Adolescent Girls’ program aimed at ensuring better outcomes in health, nutrition, hygiene, education and employment among adolescent girls. DHAN has reached more than 200,000 girls in seven Indian states and has committed itself to reaching a million adolescents over the next five years. WomenStrong’s support has allowed the program to promote more urban clubs in Madurai.
DHAN’s latest intervention will enable all participating girls to learn and apply wiser and more far-sighted savings behavior at a younger age, making it possible for them to supplement good nutrition, enhance their health and education, plan their careers, and wisely manage their finances, as well as the finances of their families in the future.