YouthSave News Flash: Bank of Kathmandu Launches Youth Savings Account for Low-Income Youth
By Rodrigo Sermeno, New America Foundation
The YouthSave Consortium is pleased to announce that on April 25th, the Bank of Kathmandu (BoK) launched its “BoK Chetanshil Yuwa Bachat Yojana (CYBY)” (meaning ‘Conscientious Youth Savings Plan’) – a savings account tailored for low-income youth aged 10 to 22. The product, which was earlier piloted through its branches in Attariya, Surkhet, Bhaktapur and Gongabu, will now be available at all of its 43 branches across Nepal.
The CYBY account includes features such as low minimum balance, free lockable piggy bank and highest interest rate among other savings products offered by BoK. The bank will offer the product, in addition to its related features, at a few selected venues like schools/clubs, and the bank’s branches.
To help ensure young people not only understand the benefits of smaller savings, but also are motivated to proactively save, BoK will use traditional channels like television, radio, and newspapers, along with street performances, orientation with stakeholders, and discussions at educational institutions.
CYBY is the second official product launch, joining BCS’ “Cuenta Amiga Para Jovenes” in Colombia, under the multi-year, multi-country YouthSave Project, which is also investigating the potential of savings accounts as a tool for youth development and financial inclusion in Kenya and Ghana. As a YouthSave partner, BoK will provide financial education in partnership with Save the Children and its partner NGOs. During the project period, research partner New ERA will be studying the uptake and usage of the product.
BoK, which has been promoting savings habits among different socioeconomic groups through tailored products and accessible channels, hopes this product will a) bring marginalized and unbanked young people into the mainstream financial sector; b) create and encourage savings habits among youth; and c) strengthen the bank’s corporate social responsibility towards this important growing segment of Nepal’s society.
We congratulate BoK on the launch of their youth savings account and look forward to working in partnership with them to achieve these important and ambitious goals.