Overview of the Responsible Microfinance Facility
The Agence Française de Développement (AFD) funds the Responsible Microfinance Facility (RMF), which launched operations in January 2015 and is working to build capacity and improve practice in social performance management (SPM) in the Sub-Saharan Africa and Middle East North Africa Regions. The Social Performance Task Force is managing the RMF, in collaboration with the Smart Campaign. One type of funding that the RMF offers is co-financing to financial institutions who would like to do an "SPI4 Social Audit Plus." (NB: Doing a SPI4 audit alone does not require any external financing, as the SPI4 can be used as a self-assessment tool.)
Overview of an "SPI4 Social Audit Plus"
The SPI4 Social Audit Plus involves a SPI4 audit plus a customized activity. For example:
a) SPI4 audit + post-assessment mentoring
The financial institution conducts a SPI4 with a qualified SPI4 auditor. (NB: CERISE oversees the training and qualification of auditors.) As with any accompanied SPI4 audit, the auditor works with management immediately following the assessment to prioritize areas for improvement and develop an action plan. The SPI4 auditor then works with the financial institution to facilitate implementation (build commitment, provide guidance, identify resources, one-on-one coaching, etc.). For example, you might like 5 days of coaching over a period of 5 months. You might also ask your mentor to provide individualized support to your institution's SPM champion or SPM committee.
b) Pre-training + SPI4 audit
For financial institutions that are new to SPM, a qualified SPI4 auditor organizes an awareness-raising workshop on SPM first, and then conducts the SPI4 audit.
c) Participatory SPI4 audit
For large financial institutions, a qualified SPI4 auditor dedicates a longer time to the SPI4 audit process, in order to include a wider range of stakeholders (staff at HQ, Board members, but also branch staff, clients, other external partners).
All financial institutions who receive funding for a SPI4 Social Audit Plus must commit to report back to the RMF on their experiences, to share what they have accomplished and lessons learned along the way.
8-14 days depending on the activity (see the budget guidelines on page 6 of this form for further information on allocation of days).
All financial institutions are welcome to apply.
All SPI4 Social Audit Plus activities may be conducted in French or English. This application form will ask you for your preferred language.
The cost of an "SPI Social Audit Plus" varies depending on the daily rates and location of the SPI4 auditor (which would affect travel costs), as well as the specific elements of the "plus" activity that your institution chooses. Your institution will be responsible for 50% of this cost and the RMF will co-finance the remaining 50%. Your share of co-financing may be in-kind rather than by spending money (e.g., using your own venue for training will count as paying for training venue rental; you can also count your staff time dedicated to the process).
RMF procedure to disburse co-financing grant
The RMF will not disburse the co-financing grant to an institution on the date when its application is approved. Instead, it will wait until the institution begins paying for, or using in-kind contribution to implement, its 50% share of the cost. This is to avoid problems that might occur if the RMF contributes 50% but the financial institution is ultimately not able to contribute its 50% share of the cost. Additionally, RMF will pay third-party vendors directly. This means that a portion, or all, of the co-financing may be paid directly to a third party instead of deposited in the account of the institution. In cases where it is not possible for the RMF to pay third-party vendors directly, the institution may pay those vendors directly and then submit receipts to the RMF for reimbursement.
Project start and end dates
To be determined. The questions below in this application form ask you for your preferred start date of the project, and also to describe any time constraints you have. SPI4 Social Audit Plus activities must be completed within six months of their start date.
Deadline to submit application
None. RMF accepts applications on a rolling basis.