Paison Ki Paathshaala – Going to School: Empowering Communities through Mobile

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Mobile penetration is now allowing projects like ‘Paison Ki Paathshaala’ to reach rural and semi-urban communities across India, delivering rich, informative content and adding heaps of value to their lives.

Financial inclusion is among the foremost mandates of the Union Government, and rightly so. For a country that seriously grapples with issues of poverty and extremely low levels of financial knowledge, it is about time that India’s masses became financially literate. Yet, financial literacy is only a factor of what affordable educational media available to civil society. Yes, school infrastructure has traditionally been our Achilles heel. However, with the advent of mobile technology, simple, low-end feature phones are enabling rural and semi-urban communities across India to receive rich, informative content that can add heaps of value to their lives.

It has become essential for the economically backward classes, especially in the I7-25 years age bracket to be trained in financial skills, so that they can consider opening bank accounts, become savvy, and eventually consider small business. Information available on the internet on these subjects is in English; and there has been a crying need for a show designed to reach out to people in a language and style they can understand easily.

Onboard with Going to School

As a step towards financial inclusion, MobilArt and New Delhi-based Going to School (a not-for-profit trust which works to educate and train youngsters through story-telling) have kick-started a 360-degree mobile solution for financial literacy named, ‘Paison Ki Paathshaala.’ It is a mobile campaign effective across platforms such as SMS, OBD-IVR and a microsite. First launched on July 1st, 2015, the campaign is live in four cities, namely Mumbai, Pune, New Delhi and Chennai. It airs twice on all weekdays in regional languages on 101 Vividh Bharati for a duration of 5-15 minute.

Paison Ki Paathshaala is a high-impact infotainment solution to a subject that is considered dull and uninteresting. So, our efforts from the very beginning were focused at creating a solution that is easily-digestible, engaging, shareable, and memorable story-like format. Paison Ki Paathshaala is the convergence of education and entertainment.

For instance, the IVR platform features radio shows on financial subject, brief topical chapters titled as Paison ki Tippani, as well as a mechanism that enables users to register their queries, duly answered by the Going to School team.

platforms-involved-in-the-campaign

Here’s a bird’s eye view of the PLATFORMS involved in the campaign:

  • SMS (1 way SMS for tips/trivia & 2 way SMS for subscription and quiz)

SMS TIPS

Tips/Trivia on each of the topics like Banking, PAN card, Budgeting and so on are sent every day. There is SMS quiz which plays after 4 days of each topic.

  • OBD IVR SYSTEM (toll free, call back 6 minute topical educational capsules)

OBD CALL FLOW

  1. The user is offered to choose between listening to the Radio, Money ki Tippani or record their query on a Voicemail.
  2. Our content on the financial portal gives user information about banking, budgeting, investment and other financial topics.

On SMS and OBD, PKP is a free subscription based service that users can follow to gain topic wise knowledge on financial planning over a period of time.

  • MICROSITE (Quiz contest, Audio content, Infotainment)

The microsite, radio.goingtoschool.com, helps subscribers take quizzes per chapter which helps them gauge they have understood the content correctly with the help of Tips/Trivia and OBD content. Other than Quizzes, it also comprises Info and Audio shows. Each of them accompanies information and Radio/Tippani on each chapter and the subscriber can download them to his phone if he likes. The Microsite is visible in three languages – Hindi, Marathi and Tamil.

Not only are we extremely grateful to be part of a project that effects ground root change, but also one that makes much needed financial knowledge accessible across the length and breadth of our great nation. More than 600 listeners called on the first day of our Mumbai broadcast on July 1; and MobilArt hopes to serve ever-larger numbers in the coming quarters.

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