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Rani Deshpande

Save the Children

Rani Deshpande is Director of Financial Services and Employment at Save the Children, where she leads global work designed to provide households and youth with the opportunities, skills, and tools they need to earn and manage income. Previously at Save the Children, she led YouthSave, a $12.5M project created in partnership with The MasterCard Foundation to investigate the potential of savings accounts as a tool for youth development and financial inclusion in developing countries. The project enabled over 130,000 teens to open tailored savings accounts at local banks and reached almost 50,000 youth with direct financial education, plus over 700,000 individuals with SMS-, community-, or mass media-based messaging.  
 
Ms. Deshpande’s background includes consulting, research, technical, training, and direct service roles in the nonprofit and private sectors, with a focus on microfinance and small enterprise. Prior to joining Save the Children, Ms. Deshpande was a management consultant, assisting nonprofit organizations with strategy and business planning at The Bridgespan Group. Earlier, she conducted research and industry-building activities at CGAP, notably around savings, which has also been the focus of her published writing.  Previously, Ms. Deshpande worked directly with MSMEs and individuals in India and West Africa, providing training and technical assistance on export production, small business management, and financial literacy.
 
Ms. Deshpande earned her undergraduate degree from Stanford University and a dual Masters in international affairs and business from Columbia University.
 

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