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This the contribution that came from the OpenIDEO meetup.
We have created a customer persona using the invaluable help of Jose and his family (They just started micro financing their project through Kiva), who shared their experience and gave us invaluable insights.

Our customer is Lupe, a 36yo single mother with three kids (5, 8,13). Lupe speaks only spanish and works as janitor everyday from 3pm to 11pm. During the morning, she takes her kids to school and cleans her house. Lupe wants to save money for her children’s college fund but she is not sure on how to do so. The Financial Literacy Program would be perfect for her, so: how can we reach out to Lupe to make her aware of the Financial Literacy Program?

Lupe goes to the church every Sunday and it is at the church, a place she trusts, that Lupe knows about the Financial Literacy Program held at the library. The pastor advises her and others to take part at the Financial Literacy Program. At the church that day Lupe also receives a flyer and a form she can fill to provide her information if she wants to participate at the Financial Literacy Program.

Someone from the library collects the forms and calls Lupe to register her for the Financial Literacy Program that suits her best (Tuesday from 11am to 1pm).

When Lupe arrives at the library for the Financial Literacy Program she receives a folder with her name and a questionnaire in spanish she can fill describing why she is taking the Financial Literacy Program and what are her financial concerns. In the questionnaire, she will be able to choose one or more of: A. Saving and Spending B. Loan and Credit Score C.How to earn more.
By choosing at least one of these topics and giving more information, the organizers will be able to address her to the right group for the first part of the lecture. During the second part of the Program Lupe can receive from the organizer information and contacts of professionals in her community that can help her.

From this scenario our group discussed that the major things to take in consideration while developing the Financial Literacy Program are:

1. Resources for children as well (both kids and high school age)
2. Creation of person profile
3. Chain of custody
4. Understanding the hubs
5. Language and culture
6. Categorizing information in order to filter the problem
7. Credibility in marketing material and communication (flyer, Facebook….)
8. Identify Advocates
9. Easy access to information
10. When and timeframe


Simona commented on The power of community - Women together for a Change

For what concerns the aspects that made the idea successful, I think these are the most important:
1. Be humble and understand the people, what is their real need. When we started the pilot, Pulse looked very different than now. We had to adapt the idea to the real need of the people, understand dynamics in the slums (Leaders in the community are the one that will create the excitement and will bring everyone together).
2. Communicate the idea in a way that it is easy for your audience to understand. Make them part of the creation process. When our team presented the idea we prepared plays and draws to make Pulse easy for everyone to understand, and the women told us what they liked and what they didn't like. It was a coo-creation process.
3. Find the right local partners! We had the support of a local organization that was already working with the community for other projects. This was absolutely key to be able to start the dialogue with the women.


Simona commented on The power of community - Women together for a Change

Hi Adria, thank you for your comment! Yes, Pulse is currently up and running in Pune. Once the Pune site will run autonomusly they will expand in other sites in India. I am sure that Pulse can be implemented in many other places. The concept of having a safe place to save small amount of change it is definitely applicable to households in other developing countries. For sure before that, it will be necessary to run other pilot projects to understand what are the challenges of the locals. For instance when we went to Ahmedabad after talking with the women we came to know that they don't know how to read and for an idea that was SMS based that was a challenge. In other countries or even closer cities the challenges can be very different, so being sure that your product is needed and in which way is key!