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Caroline Shenaz Hossein

Around the world women and racialized people organize micro-banks that are humane and grounded in the local arenas in which they live, play and work. This chapter is focused on mutual aid of the people who organize self-help banks also called rotating savings and credit associations (ROSCAs). It is these informal financial cooperative institutions that should be defining what we mean by microfinance. Millions of people, mostly women, who can be referred to as the Banker Ladies, are relentless in their efforts to make banking inclusive – and they contribute to the framing of diverse financial economies in quiet but impressive ways as they zero in on what matters, the collective. ROSCAs show that excluded groups come together through their own self-determination to not only contest their systemic economic and social exclusion in conventional formal finance but define the concept of diverse financial economies.