Linking self-help groups with banks in India
India's bank-linkage programme has been running for 10 years and now provides savings and loan services to 7.8 million households. The system is based on self-help groups which organize loans and savings for their members, then deposit group savings or access group loans from the bank. The national development bank, NABARD, provides refinancing and NGOs help form and nurture the self-help groups. This article looks at how the groups are formed, what are the advantages of the bank-linkage system, the extent to which different players in the sytem can operate sustainably and future challenges.