ACCESS ASSIST is set up as a charitable trust committed to providing services, forums and knowledge resources that will advance and support greater access to financial services to the poor and low income households in India. Driven by support from a vast cross-section of stakeholders, ASSIST continues add value through its convening role in the microfinance and inclusive finance sector through the
ACCESS ASSIST was registered in 2009 and started operations in 2010 as an affiliate of ACCESS Services to provide exclusive focus on the monumental challenge of bringing a large segment of the population into the formal financial system. While part of the microfinance programme portfolio of ACCESS at the time, consisting of technical assistance and consulting, research and studies at ‘Tier 2’ and incubating and strengthening of community based microfinance organizations at ‘Tier 1’, transitioned completely to ASSIST, the brand ownership of the flagship Microfinance India Initiative including the Summit, annual publications and the Awards, was and continues to be jointly shared by ACCESS and ASSIST. With changes in the microfinance sector emanating from the Andhra Pradesh crisis in 2010, ASSIST evolved its work in the area of social performance management and towards rebuilding credibility of the MFI sector.
To be the leading Gateway Agency in India to integrate the financial value chain that helps to build an inclusive financial system within which the poor are empowered and are able to access financial services to overcome their vulnerabilities.
To consistently work towards strengthening the enabling environment by informing and influencing policies, creating platforms and facilitating dialogue among stakeholders towards developing client centric products, processes that will help in effective organising of the demand and catalyzing supply to meet the financial needs of the poor.
Inclusive Finance India Summit platform, the annual sector publications and policy dialogues at the national and state level, ASSIST has resources and professionals to provide technical advisory to institutions on operational and management systems, along with specialization in specific thematic areas including client protection, financial literacy and community based microfinance processes. With financial literacy and inclusion projects on the ground, ASSIST draws practical experiences from the field to develop its professional strength for these sectoral roles. While on the one hand ASSIST organizes the demand through programmes on the ground, at another level, it engages with stakeholders to catalyze supply of financial services.