RMDC has been regularly organizing Annual Review Workshops of its partner MFIs since its beginning. The objectives of the workshops were creating a forum for sharing experiences between Microfinance Institutions (MFIs), review of their operations, identify current problems and challenges, strengths and weaknesses and learn from each other's experiences and developing relationship and coordination among partner organizations (POs) of RMDC.
Keeping in this mind, RMDC had organized four Annual Review Workshops of its Partner MFIs in different areas which were concluded very successfully with joint declarations at the end. The First workshop was held in Kathmandu from Dec. 28-29, 2015, the second workshop was in Nepalgunj from Jan. 25-27, 2016, The third in Pokhara from Feb. 11-12, 2016 and the fourth in Biratnagar from Feb. 29-March 1, 2016.
The total no. of participants were around 320 representing 140 MFIs. The participants comprised Chairpersons, Board Members, Chief Executive Officers, Microfinance Operation Managers of MFIs and Cooperatives.
All the four workshops had been chaired by Mr Joyti Chandra Ojha, Chief Executive Officer of RMDC. In his opening remarks, CEO of RMDC expressed that this kind of workshop would provide feedback for improving RMDC's way of doing business and the developing strategies for future. He hoped, this kind of forum also facilitate sharing of experiences between MFIs and would help reduce level of poverty in the country. He also urged the participants to scale up investment in the area that would promote employment opportunity for the unemployed youth. He hoped that this forum would develop solidarity, unity and coordination among the MFIs.
All four workshops were coordinated by Ms Annapurna Shrestha, Manager of RMDC. In her welcome remarks, she highlighted the background and objective of the workshop and urged the participants to come up with workable strategies to cope with the problems and the challenges facing by the MFIs and cooperatives.
In each of the workshops the first day of the workshop was concentrated in presentation of the participating MFIs presented their progress, problems and challenges experienced by each of the participating MFIs and status of implementing of earlier declaration passed by them. At the end of the first day major problems and issues were identified on the presentation by the participants.
After presentation by the Microfinance Institutions, Assistant General Manager of RMDC Mr Ram Dayal Rajbanshi and Mr Tirtha Ratna Konaju facilitated identification of problems. The major problems faced by MFIs were multiple financing, over indebtedness of clients, increasing default, high rate of clients drop out, inadequate supervision of clients, misuse of loan, staff dropout, etc.
On the second day, all the participating MFIs were divided into groups. Each group was given problems and issues for discussion in groups. Manager of RMDC Mr Pritha Bahadur Thapa has facilitated this session. Simultaneously one group was given a task to prepare a declaration. Each group made recommendations for resolving the problem and specified responsible authority for implementation of the same. At the end each of the workshops came up with a pledge to improve the system of microfinance and deliver quality services to the target families.
During the closing session, CEO of RMDC Mr Jyoti Chandra Ojha thanked all the participants for their active participation in the workshops. He also pointed out that MFIs should also move towards financing the agricultural sector and the youth for creating self employment within the country. Mr Ojha said "MFIs should follow good governance. MFIs must update with changing time should follow suggestions directed by the Central Bank". He further said that MFIs should focus on capacity building of their Clients and staffs and also develop suitable loan products for the remote area's clients according to their needs and demands. Mr Ojha also suggested the MFIs to conduct financial literacy program to the clients on time and assured that RMDC would continue support for capacity building future as well.
All the workshop have received positive feedbacks from the all the participants and have strengthened mutual understanding relations and respect among MFIs. The participants have highly applauded as the valuable forum for sharing and learning from each other experiences and problems.