Financial Literacy of the economically underprivileged is the first step towards ensuring financial inclusion within India. Ujjivan Financial Services along with its sister concern Parinaam Foundation is striving towards financial inclusion of its customers across India with a variety of programs like screening of Sankalp (a short documentary film created by Ujjivan to educate the customers of Microfinance companies on the consequences of over borrowing, ghost lending and on the importance of Credit bureau) and Diksha Financial Literacy Program created by Parinaam Foundation our sister concern, a five module in-depth classroom training aimed at
Diksha FLP was launched in August 2012; the program is based on the story of two sisters (Sukhi-Dukhi), and includes role plays, games, group work, assignments, diary maintenance. The 5 Diksha modules deal with teaching microfinance customers on cash-flow; income and expenditure budgeting; saving and savings options, and debt management. They are taught to differentiate between "needs" and "wants", to negotiate their debt and understand the mechanics of Loans / EMI components and the use of bank account facilities such as ATMs, SMS alerts and cheque books.
Materials such as video animations, flipcharts, and financial diaries which are pictorial, colorful are used as part of imparting the financial knowledge and thus retaining the attention span of participants during training process. Calculators are provided to customers to teach them basic numerical skills; Financial Diaries to help them track their income and expenses and Saving Boxes to inculcate saving habits in our beneficiaries/their children, before they are able to open bank accounts.
Diksha is currently run across 289 Ujjivan branches in 18 states of India. Over 260314 customers have gone through this program since its inception. A total of 83782 savings bank accounts were opened for Diksha customers. Nearly 121027 customers have got their loans through cashless disbursements and around 10727 customers have got big ticket loans either to develop their business or repair their houses and 501 customers enrolled into Micro Pension after Diksha.