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OneFamily supports ICMIF Foundation to boost financial resilience in low-income communities

March 2024

Written by Frankie Entwistle, Digital Content Lead

OneFamily has announced plans to work with the ICMIF Foundation and UNDP (United Nations Development Programme) to help fight rural poverty and increase gender equality.

The ICMIF Foundation works to support mutual and cooperative insurers in providing inclusive insurance products that protect people in low-income, vulnerable communities from extreme poverty.

The charity was formed by the International Cooperative and Mutual Insurance Federation (ICMIF), which OneFamily is a member of.

Since 2015, the ICMIF Foundation has supported insurers in emerging markets to provide a safety net for over three million low-income households through insurance and resilience building.

“This project plays to our strengths and our mutual roots of putting people first,” said OneFamily CEO, Jim Islam. “It’s about humanity and supporting others as they grow their resilience – irrespective of where they live.”

OneFamily is specifically supporting the UNDP ICMIF Insurance Innovation Challenge (IIC). The call for applications in 2023 asked for innovative mutual or cooperative insurance schemes that could benefit from ICMIF’s financial and technical support.

The four winning projects all work with grassroots communities to co-create risk models with local people, with a particular focus on increasing financial resilience in women in developing countries.

As a mutual society, this cooperative approach fits well with OneFamily’s belief that individuals should have the option to build their own resilience and the tools to protect themselves financially.

“It’s important to understand and respond to what’s happening in our own backyard, and we will continue to do this,” said Jim. “But we also need to recognise that inequality is a global problem and that we are part of that very same global community.

We can’t close our eyes to what happens beyond our boundary fence.”

The winning projects


Read about the winning projects on ICMIF’s website

India: National Insurance VimoSEWA Cooperative Ltd. will develop the ‘Saral Suraksha Yojana’ income loss insurance product to protect women working in the informal sector in from out-of-pocket expenses incurred during a health crisis or hospitalisation.

Kenya: The CIC Insurance Group product “CIC COOP Care Micro Health” will target 8,800 policies (inpatient, outpatient, maternity, dental, optical and end of life expense) from low-income households in co-operative societies, specifically women owned cooperatives.

Malawi: The Co-operative Life Assurance Ltd ‘Abwenzi Rural Health Insurance Project’, will target 50,000 policy holders (covering maternity, hospitalization, funeral and outpatient coverage), mostly women in rural areas and earning less than US$3 per day.

Sri Lanka: The Sanasa Life Insurance Public limited Company (SLIC) project aims to scale up insurance for women-run micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) through an innovative insurance product called "Labandi Ran Wasi” designed specifically for women entrepreneurs in Sri Lanka.

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