UNCDF has partnered with the Government of Odisha to further strengthen the financial lives of women entrepreneurs under the aegis of Mission Shakti Programme- an initiative to empower women through credit and market linkages by organizing them in self-help groups (SHGs). Nearly 70 lakh women, organized into 6 lakh SHGs throughout Odisha, benefit socially and economically through affordable financing, income-generating opportunities, and skill development.
UNCDF has set up the Mission Shakti Living Lab in the state, which aims to understand and improve the financial health of women entrepreneurs by designing and rolling out a suite of financial health-centric (digital) products and tools. They aim to achieve this by deepening their understanding of women’s financial lives, business needs and aspirations, market barriers and prevailing social and cultural norms that prevent women from pursuing and/or expanding businesses.
UNCDF invites research firms, academic institutions, and think-tanks to contribute towards enhancing the financial wellbeing of women entrepreneurs participating in the Mission Shakti Programme in Odisha, India. In particular, the applicant(s) will be responsible to carry out the following activities:
- Undertake deep-dive quantitative and qualitative research on the financial, business, and social lives of women in SHGs to churn insights leading to the development and delivery of financial health-centric solutions including mapping of social norms
- Define financial health in context of women and women enterprises in SHGs of Odisha, identify its determinants, and design an index to measure and track financial health
- Conduct an impact assessment of the specific financial interventions on women and women entrepreneur’s financial health, socio-economic, and business outcomes
- The applicant/ lead applicant must be a registered entity with a local presence in India either through a registered entity or a branch office. The ideal firm will have demonstrated experience in conducting high-quality gender-centric consumer finance research, gender centric financial product design, and women economic empowerment-related impact evaluations.
- The selected applicant will sign a Performance-Based Agreement (PBA) with UNCDF. The applicants are required to propose the financial cost for this partnership, and they encourage applicants to share part of the cost. Applicants may apply independently or in a consortium.
- The applicant/ consortium will work together with UNCDF in a joint effort to understand and build financial health for the low and moderate income women. Applicants/ Consortiums comprising of research firms, academic institutions, and think-tanks are encouraged to apply.
- The applicant/lead applicant must be a registered organization (includes for-profit firms, universities, think tanks and non-profit organizations)
- The applicant/lead applicant must have a local presence in India either through a registered entity or a branch office.
- Applicants may apply independently or in a consortium.
- The applicant/lead applicant must have been in operations for at least three years and must be able to furnish statutory accounts and audited financial statements for at least three years.
- Applicants shall not have been the subject of bankruptcy, liquidation, judicial settlement, safeguarding, and cessation of activity or any other analogous situation resulting from a similar procedure.
- Applicants, any of their staff members or their board of directors shall not be included in the United Nations financial sanctions lists, particularly in the fight against the financing of terrorism and against attacks on international peace and security.
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