Winners of the third annual Financial Inclusion Ambassador Award!

In 2017, we announced the winner of our third annual Financial Inclusion Ambassador Award, to recognize members and partners for their financial inclusion advocacy work. This year, we awarded organizations that significantly contributed to promotion or advocacy for financial inclusion at a national and regional level. Specifically, we looked for organizations that engaged in a dialogue that led to a significant advancement or helped address a major challenge, blockage or bottleneck in the financial inclusion agenda.

The 2017 Financial Inclusion Ambassador Award was presented to:

Mikrofinans Norge (Microfinance Norway), represented by Unni Sekkesæter.

Mikrofinans Norge set a national precedent by winning a Ministry of Finance license to offer microcredit outside of the regulation imposed on banks. The process of negotiations took more than 3 years. Now Mikrofinans Norge is able to lend to micro-entrepreneurs, largely recruiting from migrants and refugees (80% of all clients).



Fondi Besa sh.a

Besa initiated and led a discussion with the Albanian government (Ministry of European Integration, Ministry of Social Welfare and Youth) and representatives of the European Investment Fund to sign an agreement allowing Albanian financial institutions to receive support from the European Union Programme for Employment and Social Innovation “EaSI”. As a result, Besa gained access to the EaSI Guarantee Facility, which helped it to increase its outreach in rural areas where potential clients lack collateral, land titles and access to the market.

Our warmest congratulations to both Mikrofinans and Besa!

Advocacy for financial inclusion is that simple. To learn more about our Financial Inclusion Ambassador Toolkit, visit our website or contact Ewa[at] Or find people in your country at the government level, responsible for implementation of EU commission programs covering microfinance here

The award ceremony took place during the 20th Annual MFC Conference in Sarajevo (May 2017).


This initiative has received financial support from the European Union Programme for Employment and Social Innovation “EaSI” (2014-2020). For further information please consult: