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OXFAM-NOVIB

In November 2006, SEDPI embarked on its first international training in the Netherlands. Commissioned by Oxfam-Novib, SEDPI brought with them their expertise and delieverd the “Fundamentals and Methodologies of Microfinance” to participants representing more than 20 migrant organizations based in The Netherlands originally from Asia, Africa and Latin America. Seven months later, Oxfam-Novib again tapped SEDPI to facilitate a training on Financial Literacy to the same group and to the United Migrants Domestic Workers (UMDW). With the training, UMDW was able to show that migrants can make socially-responsible investments to microfinance institutions in the Philippines. Due to its success, the Financial Literacy training will be delivered in five areas in the Netherlands in 2008 – Amsterdam, Utrecht, Rotterdam, Groeningen and Flevoland. It is also planned to be replicated to Filipino communities in Belgium, Luxembourg and Italy.

With the topic “Fundamentals and Methodologies of Microfinance,” participating Netherlands-based migrant organizations from Africa, Asia, and Latin America were acquainted to the various lending approaches and microfinance methodologies, development impact of microfinance, and emerging best practices in the industry . A few days after the training, the participants wrote an evaluation report on their own volition and submitted the same to Oxfam Novib. The report stated that “the training presented the functional dimensions of microfinance, addressing key issues and trends. It went further to introduce some of the effective processes for achieving optional structures for a successful delivery of microfinance programs.” More importantly, it stressed that “the training was excellently delivered in an environment of humor making participants learn with fun and achieve the motivation they need,” while “valuable information were used to drive home all the important aspects of the program.”

Financial Literacy introduced methods and practices on saving, budgeting and investing remittances. All topics were under the context of leveraging remittances as a powerful resource for development through financial integration; and use for both consumption and productive purposes. Making use of its jovial brand of training to get content-heavy discussions across to participants, SEDPI again received good reviews. As commented by one of the participants, “[The] combination of theory and practices from personal experience made the [learning process] wonderful and enjoyable.”