Asobancaria highlights Bancamía’s initiative on financial education as a successful case example

Bancamía’s financial education program ‘Echemos Números’ (Let’s do the figures) has been highlighted among 12 successful cases recounting on banking initiatives. These cases are compiled in the Sustainability Report of the Colombian Banking and Financial Institutions’ Association (Asobancaria).

Through the initiative, BBVAMF’s Colombian MFI offers entrepreneurs the necessary knowledge and tools so they could improve their personal and business finances. It also facilitates decision making when choosing which financial products and services to avail of, optimizing their economic resources, mitigating risks and increasing their savings as well as generating higher surpluses.

Bancamía offers, within the same initiative the program called ‘Asesoramiento Objetivo’ (Training for all), where credit officers give financial training to entrepreneurs and other people who are non-clients. Workshops (‘Talleres Presenciales’) are also conducted in branch offices, where games are used for adult capacity-building and to create awareness on the importance of savings, debt management and budgeting, which would help them better handle their finances.

“One distinctive aspect of our financial education program is that we don’t only capacitate clients, but we also invite the rest of the community to join us, so they can participate in workshops overseen by our employees. We conduct them in our 199 offices, covering 91% of the country’s departments”, explains Miguel Ángel Charria, the MFI’s executive president.

In 2017, the program ‘Training for all’ gave education to 116,717 entrepreneurs who are clients, and 48,015 non-clients. Bancamía also conducted 1,878 workshops where 37,500 people joined, 61% of whom do not have any business ties with the institution.

With the program ‘Let’s do the figures’, we were able to help vulnerable people make better decisions regarding money management

“In Bancamía, we are bound by the fact that we contribute to productive development in areas where we operate; places where we serve more than 945,000 microentrepreneurs. 44% of them live in rural areas and 54% are women. With the ‘Let’s do the figures’ program, we were able to help vulnerable people make better decisions regarding money management, helping them achieve good results in generating income”, confirmed Charria.

Together with the BBVA Microfinance Foundation, the MFI has developed a social impact measurement system whose outcomes show that thanks to the good business performance of their microentrepreneurs, 54% of those who were poor, were able to overcome poverty after two years with the institution. Furthermore, these data also prove that annually, the sales of entrepreneurs grow at 14%, while their surpluses increase 15% and their assets, 25%.

These results highlight the effect of financial education programs, which aim to make Colombians more knowledgeable in managing their finances, so they could achieve progress for themselves and their families.