> Posted by Calum Scott, Program Impact Director, Opportunity International 

An Opportunity International client talks with her loan officer while examining her cocoa beans.

As a network of 40 microfinance institutions in 22 countries, Opportunity International is well positioned to play a powerful role in supporting the positive development of the microfinance industry. For client protection, we believe that the Smart Campaign’s Client Protection Certification represents the highest standard of assurance that an institution’s practices are responsible.

To promote client protection and certification among our network, we’ve engaged the support of MicroFinanza Rating – a specialized microfinance rating agency and one of the Smart Campaign’s licensed certifiers.

The agreement with MicroFinanza will facilitate our network partners to undergo certification missions, and promote the sharing of lessons learned from certification experiences across our network of institutions. This agreement also demonstrates our confidence in the quality of the work that MicroFinanza does.

At the same time we recognize that the implementation of all indicators to satisfy the Certification Standards requires commitment on the part of each individual institution, its management, and board of directors. Ensuring that all our affiliates reach this level of practice will take time and effort.

We believe this collaboration founded on the support for certification will strengthen the movement and encourage industry momentum around protecting and empowering clients.

Image credit: Opportunity International

Have you read?

Microfinance CEOs: Smart Campaign Certification is a “Clear Step” Toward Responsible Microfinance

Microfinance CEOs Make Six Major Commitments at 2013 Partnerships Against Poverty Summit

The Financial Inclusion 2020 Global Forum: A Letter to Microfinance Institutions