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Spreading Financial Literacy through Street Plays

Storytelling and street plays are being used to teach financial literacy in rural Indian villages with no local banks.

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Branches of national and regional banks have been setup in many rural parts of India. However, a great number of villages are still out of reach of these banking services. Opportunities to gain financial literacy and support are even more difficult to come by in these rural areas. That's why the National Ban for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) has recently launched a campaign to promote financial literacy through street plays.

Through songs, dance, and storytelling, a team of performing artists are traveling around unbanked villages to spread awareness about financial literacy. The street plays are performed in local dialects and easy to understand. Each performance is crafted to teach a variety of topics that range from the importance of having a bank account, to how credit cards are used, to how educational loans can be taken out. After the show, performers dedicate their time to help their audience complete a bank application on the spot.

The street play program has already been successfully piloted in villages near Sedapatti and Usilampatti. NABARD will aim to reach 42 more villages and open at least 20 zero balance accounts for local farmers.

How might we use storytelling to spread financial literacy in hard to reach areas? How might communities organize educational events to make financial services more accessible and easy to understand?


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Photo of Ahmed Rub
In this interview (minute 27:20) Tom Kelley talked about how to inspire people to change behavior, he told the story when he was facing the challenge of watering in developing company, I find this story very relative to what we are trying to solve !

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