ASKI Group of Companies, Inc. - The Philippines

ASKI Group of Companies, Inc. is a Microfinance Institution with 79 branches and nearly 114,000 clients.

The Context

Besides frequent earthquakes, volcanic eruptions and tsunamis, the Philippines is also significantly affected by climate change, including increasing frequency and severity of typhoons, rising temperatures, rising sea levels, flooding and landslides. Many ASKI’s clients experience severe damages or total loss of their produce and assets/properties which leads to bankruptcy and clients delinquent or defaulting on their loans. Non-financial losses include damages to the office like power outages which can delay or stop operations are among the climate change's consequences on the part of ASKI.

In the past, initiatives typically focused on relief and rehabilitation instead of preparedness planning and strengthening of resilience.

The Initiative

Following the typhoons in 2009, ASKI recognised the need for strengthening the disaster preparedness efforts within the institution and at the community level, to mitigate the effects of climate change. ASKI addressed these challenges both in terms of processes and products.
This includes the setup of a Disaster Risk Reduction team (to play a role before, during and after the calamity); the publication of "12 Steps to Resiliency: A Guidebook on Disaster Risk Reduction and Business Continuity Planning for Microfinance Institutions". It also partnered with local
government units to conduct training for emergency response and disaster preparedness.

Moreover, ASKI also initiated:

      • Creation of resiliency fund, a form of savings of ASKI clients intended for relief and recovery in times of disaster due to natural calamities;
      • Creation of rehabilitation loans and bridge loans for heavily affected clients ;
      • Enrolment of clients to microinsurance and the organisation to Agricultural Guarantee Fund to mitigate the risks on the part of the clients and ASKI ;
      • Introduced the Green Energy Loan Programme - use of solar lamps, streetlights, irrigationsystem, home systems and biogas.

                  Building resilient communities through disaster preparedness at the institutional and community level