GENEVA – The ILO’s Microinsurance Innovation Facility today issued a call for new proposals for grants to encourage insurance providers to experiment with new products and partnerships aimed at bringing effective and affordable risk management solutions to working poor in developing countries.
The new call for proposals will provide for four to eight grants of up to US$ 100,000 to insurance providers with pilot schemes that do not require significant investments. At the same time, the Facility will also provide three to five grants for projects aimed at stimulating consumer education and protection among the poor.
The deadline for the submission of proposals online is 17:00 (Central European time) on 10 March 2009. Guidelines for applying and complete project descriptions supported by the Microinsurance Innovation Facility can be found on the Facility’s website at www.ilo.org/microinsurance.
Launched in 2008, the ILO’s Microinsurance Innovation Facility has already provided 19 innovation grants – ranging from US$ 20,000 to US$ 600,000 – during two previous rounds to insurance companies, cooperatives, non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and other microinsurance providers.
The grantees are testing a variety of experiences. Some commercial insurers focus on developing strong partnerships with actors of civil society and utility providers, others introduce highly demanded products (health, funeral and assets based) to areas with poor infrastructure and widespread illiteracy. Many also invest in new technology to widen access to microinsurance, lower the administration costs, improve data collection, ease money transfer and reduce fraud.
The Microinsurance Innovation Facility, an initiative of the Social Finance Program, is part of the ILO’s efforts to work towards a fair globalization with a wide range of partners and develop financial services, including microinsurance, to help workers manage economic hardship brought on by situations such as drought, hospitalization, or a death in the family and thus enable them to break the vicious cycle of poverty.
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