Three students from Universiti Utara Malaysia (UUM) combined their knowledge in Takaful & Shariah studies and their compassion to help the B40 communities develop the winning solution at the Digital Financial Inclusion Challenge (Challenge), which saw them receiving RM5,000 in cash.
The annual Challenge is organised by FWD Takaful Berhad (FWD Takaful) and Arus Academy and is now in its second year. It seeks to improve financial security for the B40 community by empowering youths to explore financially-inclusive solutions in the form of policies, initiatives, campaigns, social movements, business plans, alternative channels and more. Through the two-weekChallenge, 18-30 year old youths delved deep to better understand the challenge of financial inclusion for the B40 communities in Malaysia, before they competed in proposing digital solutions which are financially-inclusive and sustainable.
Ahmad Bukhari, Wan Ain Adlina and Muhammad Azamuddin, all aged 22, defeated almost 40 other youths from universities across Malaysia with their winning idea of developing an app called ‘Sempurna’ which will allow customers to customise their Takaful plans based on the exact coverage needed which may vary based on individual circumstances typically faced by the B40 communities. The proposed app will also feature rewards for behaviours (such as having a healthy lifestyle) which would lower their risk profile. The team also suggested payment options through mobile prepaid credit and post offices commonly available in urban and rural areas, among others.
According to Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM), the insurance or takaful penetration rate for the B40 segment of those aged between 20 - 59 stood at 30.3% at end-2016, as compared with the overall rate of 50.4% nationally. There was also a clear disparity between the B40 and non-B40 penetration rates across all states. Source: Expanding Insurance and Takaful Solutions for the Underserved Segment, Bank Negara Malaysia, March 2018
Wan Ahmad Najib Bin Wan Ahmad Lotfi, Chief Strategy and Digital Distribution Officer, FWD Takaful said, “We’re committed to making a real impact on financial inclusion and believe in embracing digital technology to ensure that more Malaysians, are financially protected so they can get on with living their lives to the fullest. Who better to collaborate with than our young people. Since the Challenge launch in 2021, we’ve seen our participants become increasingly invested in solving the issue, which echoes the very sentiment of financial inclusion.”
As part of the initiative’s belief to engage the youths in generating advocacy initiatives and solutions in tackling financial inclusion in Malaysia, participants of the Challenge will also have the option to be a part of the first-of-its-kind Financial Inclusion Youth Committee (Committee). The Committee is a coalition of Malaysian youths who are eager to transform the Takaful and insurance landscape, allowing them to build their network and capitalise on digitalisation to achieve the common goal of reimagining financial inclusion.
Alina Amir, co-founder of Arus Academy said, “Our finalists in this competition represented more than 10 different majors across 8 higher education institutions. All of them were passionate about making the world a more inclusive place for everyone and this includes access to financial services. We are happy to provide them with opportunities and a platform to allow for their ideas to be heard by all”.
For more info on how you can be a part of the Committee, please visit www.fundfor.life/DFIC2021/.