SWBBL Bank has been providing non-financial services to its members. These services have been found very effective as well as useful from different point of views, such as creating awareness, building capacity and confidence, developing skills, building leadership and management capacity of the members. Some of the major non-financial services undertaken are given below:
• Awareness raising and institution building contribute to enhance the capacity of the target women. The activities of the awareness raising component include pre-group training (PGT), training on leadership development, exposure visits to different MF sites, discussion and interaction in the center meetings, etc.
• Pre-group training (PGT):
Pre-group training (PGT) is a prerequisite to be a member and to form group/ centre. The duration of this training is usually 9 to 11 days depending on the members’ capacity to understand fully the training content. PGT has been successful to orient the poor target women towards microfinance program along with other aspects of social development in the community. The training has succeeded in instilling a sense of discipline among members and in enhancing their capacity. Furthermore, self-confidence has increased in members who have also learned to read and write their names.
• Centre for Community Forum:
Federating group members into the centre and the organization of meetings provide the members with a forum to enhance their capacity and sense of self-help development. Center has therefore been considered as a foundation for initiating various activities at the community level. The regular center meetings have been phenomenal to empower the members socially. Most of the center meetings are held at their respective center houses, which are built by members themselves using their own local resources. Besides the regular meeting for savings collection, loan installment collection and discussion on the other development issues are also held at the centre meeting. Members are also briefed on the importance of general sanitation and hygiene. The construction of center houses through their voluntary effort has helped them develop the feeling of ownership of the program and group solidarity among members.
• Exposure Visit:
One of the major activities of the program is to let members provide opportunity in visiting other development projects and centers. Taking people for the exposure visit from one place to another helps to bring about dramatic changes in the perception, vision and the attitude of the visitors. Visit to successful projects and meeting and interaction with their peer groups ultimately provide them with a great enthusiasm and optimism to work more convincingly for developing their businesses and communities as well.
• Centre Management training:
Center can only be sustained if the members are capable in managing group and center under strong operational structure. Leadership development training is significant to institutionalize the group and centre as cost centre of each branch office. Roles of group chair-person and centre chief/deputy center chief contribute to enhance their leadership capabilities in various development aspects of their own communities.
• Refresher training:
Group and Center can only be sustained if members are capable in managing their groups and centers and do their business productively through the proper utilization of loan. Bank organizes refresher training to its members to revive the microfinance rules and regulations and reinforce members to comply with. This has resulted in energizing members to maintain credit discipline and motivate them to do their business more effectively and pay the installment regularly.
• Skill development training:
Bank organize different types of skill development training for its clients. Such as Vegetable farming, Mushroom farming, Making Handicraft, Poultry farming, etc.