Sa-Dhan is a non-government organisation involved in finance and banking in rural India. Helping communities organise as micro finance groups, assessing loan applications, evaluating projects, identifying resources, and influencing national policy on micro finance, Sa-Dhan works from the lowest to the highest ends of the non-corporate financial sector.
The communication used the image of the hand as a symbol of support and partnership and used translations from the vernacular to communicate the many meanings and efforts of Sa-Dhan.

Text Excerpts:

Sa-Dhan: Ability

Microfinance initiatives that create a fertile ground for peoples’ growth and development.

In a world where the poor are struggling for survival, where livelihoods are unsustainable and tomorrow holds little promise, hope hinges on one crucial word: ability. Consequently, it is vital to assist people to reach their fullest potential and manage their resources effectively by identifying alternative strategies and initiating changes that can contribute to improving their future. Today, offering a helping hand to many of those engaged in this effort, is Sa-Dhan.
An association of community development finance institutions, Sa-Dhan aims to establish an enabling environment for wide-sweeping changes. Provide a platform for grassroot level member organisations, co-operatives, NGOs and self help groups to come together and formulate finance systems that are responsive to needs of the lower and lowest income segments of society. Encourage savings, credit and insurance services. Effect policy changes at the micro and macro level. Offer technical assistance and support to strengthen existing, and promote new sustainable livelihoods. And finally, to integrate them with social developmental efforts in nutrition and health to ensure that economic gains go hand in hand with improving the quality of life of the household and the community.
After all, ‘ability’ is only one of the meanings of the word, Sa-Dhan.

Sa-Dhan: Resources

Effecting policy changes that connect development objectives with the needs of the people.

The strength of any democracy lies in the participation of its people. Hence, an essential part of Sa-Dhan’s mandate is to facilitate interaction, linkages and partnership of community level organisations with the government at various levels, and work to influence and give direction to policies being formulated in both, finance and development.
To enhance participatory processes, Sa-Dhan enables policy makers, academicians and field level practitioners to brainstorm and work together on common platforms. The group works to create opportunities for policy makers to observe and comprehend ground realities. It represents the Indian microfinance sector on various national and international forums. Ensures adequate representation on various task forces and government committees set up to review policy and related issues.
And organises regional and state level events to educate practitioners on existing policy issues and the necessity of conforming to them.
Because at Sa-Dhan, we believe that these small steps will go a long way towards creating a conducive policy environment for the microfinance sector, and in turn will help people have a hand in determining their future.

Sa-Dhan: Talent

Developing skills that help local initiatives reach out to the world of global finance.

In the new economy of the world, microfinance is one of the most powerful tools in the hands of the people. To further the expansion of small local initiatives towards larger, more advanced operations, it is critical for people the ability to adhere to standards that can help the provision of better services, and withstand the scrutiny of financial business practices, worldwide.
Sa-Dhan’s focus in the area of capacity building is to establish standards that help people develop a greater understanding of participatory decision-making, financial accounting, measurement and self-monitoring. Towards this end, it develops operational standards for microfinance organisations, generates debates on issues of standards and self assessment, evaluates existing practices, and evolves consensus on minimum standards to ensure sustainable growth of the sector. When put together, all these activities enable greater accountability and transparency in the operations of the players in the sector, and the creation of a database which will signal the stability of the community development sector to regulators and supervisors, investors, lenders and donors alike.
Above all, Sa-Dhan’s work in this area is helping to bridge the distance between local level initiatives, development programmes and the finance community from all over the world.

Sa-Dhan: Wealth

Working towards self-sufficiency and prosperity through the strength of partnership.

At the core of every aspect of work at Sa-Dhan is the spirit of partnership between the various stakeholders in the microfinance movement in India. Marginalised communities of people and field level practitioners on the one hand, policy makers and resource agencies on the other. Sa-Dhan’s primary effort has been to connect the world of skills with peoples’ survival, their livelihood with community growth, policy with development, finance with security, and resources with opportunity.

From the very beginning, the idea has been to empower and energise the field of microfinance in order to ensure big gains for from small loans for the people. To create a strong nationwide association of community development organisations that work together towards self-sufficiency, prosperity and hope. A world where the poorest of the poor will hold their future in their own hands. Because that is the true wealth of a nation and its people.



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