Maureen Kwilasa is a technical advisor on financial inclusion and inclusive business at KIT Royal Tropical Institute, having joined the team in September 2019. She brings experience in designing, implementing and evaluating programs in food and nutrition security, value chain programming, financial inclusion and women’s empowerment. She holds a Masters in International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights from the Graduate Institute in Geneva, Switzerland and a Bachelor’s Degree in Law, awarded by the University of Reading in the United Kingdom.
At KIT, Maureen’s work focuses on advising on the appropriateness, access, usage and benefits of formal and informal financial services by marginalised segments of society. She specialises in both the demand and supply-side of the financial sector, bridging the gap between financial institutions – increasing their understanding of marginalized market segments – and the financially excluded – building systems to increase their financial literacy and awareness. She has strong insight into informal savings and producer associations, and she specialises in the formalisation and linkage of collectives to formal financial services.
Before joining KIT, Maureen worked as the technical advisor for financial inclusion with CARE USA, advising on programmes for eight country offices and partner organisations. While there, she worked extensively on food and nutrition security and adaptation to climate change, with crossovers into inclusive/resilient markets and value chains. Previous experience involves active roles with One Acre Fund, Oxfam, Make Every Woman Count and Amnesty International-Malaysia.
Maureen has strong analytical skills, designing, conducting and analysing context-specific qualitative research. Her most recent work covers Ghana, Malawi, Mozambique, Nigeria Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe in Africa, as well as Bangladesh and Indonesia.