The United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) has approved grant agreements with four partners in Fiji to deliver financial and insurance literacy training and raise awareness on climate and disaster risk financing.
Grants will be given to the Consumer Council of Fiji, Tailevu Dairy Farmers Cooperative Association Limited and the Cane Farmer’s Cooperative Savings and Loans Association Limited to conduct training and awareness programmes in local communities.
A fourth grant agreement was also approved for Suva-based FinTech company, IT Galax Solutions, to develop an onboarding platform to assist cooperatives and associations maintain a digital member database for better record-keeping and efficiency, all part of UNCDF’s support to the digital transformation agenda in Fiji.
The platform will also be used to link members to insurance service providers once UNCDF’s Pacific Insurance and Climate Adaptation Programme (PICAP) launches the region’s first-ever parametric insurance scheme.
PICAP was developed by the UNCDF in partnership with the UN Development Programme (UNDP) and the UN University Institute for Environment and Human Security (UNU-EHS). The Programme receives funding support from the Governments of Australia, India and New Zealand.
“We are delighted to partner with local insurers, FinTech/InsurTech service providers, cooperatives and other agri-agencies as part of our markets systems approach to addressing developing challenges,” said Krishnan Narasimhan, Programme Manager, Pacific Insurance and Climate Adaptation Programme.
“UNCDF, besides providing technical assistance, deploys de-risking financial instruments like performance based grants to support programme partners carry out activities that contribute to the overall objectives.
“Wide stakeholder engagement, particularly with women, youths, people with disabilities and other vulnerable groups, is crucial to our mandate, and such partnerships allow us to advance these goals as we prepare for the launch of PICAP’s new parametric insurance product.”
A total of 19 grant proposals were approved for project development by PICAP’s Investment Committee in March.
The funding will be released in batches in the coming months for implementing awareness, onboarding and training activities, and to insurance companies for launching the insurance services.
The Programme has developed Climate and Disaster Risk financing and insurance literacy training resources that will be deployed by the grant partners leading up to PICAP’s product launch.
The need for financial literacy and climate disaster risk finance training was highlighted in demand studies recently commissioned by PICAP, which found that Fiji’s agriculture sector was highly susceptible to natural hazards such tropical cyclones and floods.
As such, the Tailevu Dairy Farmers Cooperative will conduct financial/insurance literacy training and awareness for its 1300 members, and also onboard 250 members as customers for the pilot phase of PICAP’s parametric insurance scheme.
Similar training programmes will be conducted by the Cane Farmer’s Cooperative Savings and Loans Association for its 4300 mostly cane farmer members, with 300 to be on-boarded for the pilot phase of the parametric insurance scheme.
“We are very pleased to have been selected as a partner of UNCDF in this new, innovative and important climate and disaster risk financing initiative which our members can access and benefit from,” said the Chairman of the Tailevu Dairy Farmers Cooperative, Mr Savenaca Seniloli.
“The financial and insurance education program that goes hand in hand will really assist our members understanding of the importance of this product at this time when climate related disasters are inevitable occurrences.”
Cane Farmers Cooperative Savings and Loans Association (CCSLA) is another partner of PICAP, with plans to extend the benefits of parametric insurance to small holder cane farmers, market vendors, fishers and other informal sector workers who are their members.
CCSLA Manager Jone Kedraika said: “We are extremely humbled and happy to partner with UNCDF in this important initiative that aims to build financial resilience of low income communities in Fiji by providing climate risk insurance at affordable costs, our members and customers are bound to benefit given the past experience with natural disasters like cyclones.”
For further information contact: [Sheldon Chanel, Communications Officer at UNCDF Pacific] email@example.com; website: https://www.uncdf.org/