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Photo of the Week:

Afghan teachers

This photo was taken on March 19, 2013 during an orientation session with teachers from Aisha-i-Durani High School in Kabul who were learning how to use the mobile money services of the Afghan Wireless Communications Company (AWCC) which, in partnership with Maiwand Bank, will be releasing teachers salaries to bank accounts linked to mobile money wallets. 

Given the findings in the recent study entitled In the Hands of God: A Study of Risk and Savings in Afghanistan , bank accounts linked to mobile money may provide just the sort of trust that people in Afghanistan may need to open up bank accounts.  Salary disbursements are one of the best ways to get money into a mobile money account and, when combined with a bank account and related use cases (such as being able to pay for lunch in a school cafeteria), may be one of the best ways to encourage people to both open up savings accounts and use mobile money.  As noted in a recent article by CGAP entitled Savings in Afghanistan: Gold, Grain, Goats…and Banks?, customers familiar with mobile money had more confidence that their funds would be protected even if their phone was lost or stolen since all transactions require a mobile pin. In addition, the article went on to state that “Trust was rarely raised as an issue as all mobile money services are offered (and backed) by major telecom companies which, to date, have given no reason to doubt their solvency or credibility.”

For more on this initiative read the full article: Public School Teachers’ Salary Payment Goes Mobile

Photo Credit: USAID/Afghanistan FAIDA