The MFI GRAINE in Burkina Faso experiences the Covid Response Programme

graine photos

In April 2020, ADA launched a support programme for partner MFIs to face the epidemic. The burkinabe MFI GRAINE shares its feedback on ADA’s support.

The objective of the COVID-19 response programme is to support ADA's partner MFIs by offering them, on the one hand, technical assistance and tools to facilitate the management of their operations in the context of the epidemic and, on the other hand, subsidies for the purchase of sanitary material or equipment to enable the continuity of their activities. A total of EUR 1 022 814 was granted for this purpose.

For Eléonore Marie Céline COMPAORE/GYEBRE, GRAINE's Executive Director, "the solutions provided by the programme helped the GRAINE team to manage the consequences and impacts of the pandemic at the right time."

She added: "Firstly, in terms of managing and implementing barrier measures to minimize and/or avoid COVID contamination, while ensuring business continuity. The EUR 6,750 grant made it possible to acquire both the counters with equipment and the staff with tools such as :

  • The provision of 27 thermometers for all the counters / points of sale (1 per point of sale) for checking the temperature of customers and staff at the entrance to the counters ;
  • The provision of 3 masks per agent and the rest were distributed to clients according to their degree of vulnerability;
  • The acquisition of two laptops for the branch manager iand the e-business manager¬†to facilitate¬†teleworking.

Secondly, thanks to the 15 days of technical assistance provided by Catherine Liziard, project manager at ADA, based in Ouagadougou. This was an effective way for GRAINE to design and implement tools and solutions adapted to the context of the pandemic through :

  • Developping¬†of a business continuity plan for the rest of the year;
  • Improving liquidity management by building a maturity scenario tool;
  • Developping¬†of management procedures to reduce the risk of non-repayment of loans and the collection of savings".

The project manager of ADA, specialized in digital finance, Catherine Liziard also described the technical support and the work with the MFI in the context of social distancing:

"The technical support is done via Skype, even though we are in the same city, in order to respect the health instructions in force in Burkina Faso and the gestures that were barriers during the crisis. The sometimes mediocre quality of the Internet in Ouagadougou does not allow us to use the camera, but allows us to communicate and work remotely. This technical assistance, lasting 15 man-days, enabled the GRAINE team from mid-April 2020 to quickly develop its business continuity plan, identify its stakeholders, and define its action plan to ensure the continuation of the institution's activities while limiting the risks related to contagion. GRAINE used the toolkit developed by ADA to finalise this first phase.

GRAINE's team then carried out a client follow-up to better assess the impact of the crisis on its clients and on its outstanding loan portfolio, in particular to estimate requests for credit rescheduling. This also enabled it to segment its clientele and identify the sectors of activity most affected. A specific monitoring tool has been developed to consolidate and analyse the information collected during telephone calls to clients. The MFI also benefited from technical support to improve its treasury and liquidity management tools to facilitate updating and monitoring. It is also planned¬†to support GRAINE in updating its activity forecasts for the coming months and years with the Microfin tool. GRAINE envisaged the implementation of a "merchant accounts" wallet solution with a telecom operator, the activation of SMS banking to inform its customers and to relaunch them at each maturity date, and also the implementation of inter-branch operations to enable customers to carry out their transactions in all GRAINE's counters. Procedures have been developed to this end.¬†¬Ľ

 

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