‘Rural Youth’, an Untapped Market: Emerging Results from IFAD’s Rural Youth Economic Empowerment Program
Globally, rural youth are an underserved and often misunderstood segment of the market for youth-inclusive financial services. In the MENA region it is even more pronounced. The few programs achieving success are often too small or too one-dimensional to scale up; thus missing the opportunity to catalyze benefits that go beyond access to finance, such as increased employment and resilience. With support from the UN’s International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), Silatech and Making Cents International are piloting five financial services models for reaching scale; with bank, MFI, and NGO partners in Morocco, Tunisia, Egypt, and Yemen. Hear about what does and doesn’t work; what has been learned to date, and whether the combination of these two difficult issues - reaching scale in rural areas and serving youth in an appropriate and sustainable way - is even possible and how to balance the two for economic and social viability that can stand the test of time.