Harsha Tai is a Grameen Mittra. In Hindi, Grameen means “Village” and Mittra means “Friend.” It is a perfect expression for the way Harsha is transforming her village as a result of the door-to-door digital financial services she now offers her clients. Access to formal banking services is a true hardship in the remote community where they live. It requires walking more than two-and-a-half-miles each way.
For Lihaba, one of Harsha Tai’s clients, the journey was unthinkably difficult. Her husband is partially paralyzed and has dementia; she carries him wherever they go. To get his government pension she would lift, pull and drag him each way of the two-kilometer walk to the bus; after riding the bus ten-kilometers, she carried him to the bank and again back to the bus stop. Lifting and pulling a grown man across a room is more than most of us could do. Lihaba did it for five miles every week. Until Harsha Tai became a Mittra and was able to carry the bank to them