Impact Evaluation of Savings Groups and Stokvels in South Africa Report

Seeking to better understand the trends and the underlying motivation to use financial services, FinMark Trust commissioned a qualitative impact study of SaveAct savings groups and stokvels in rural South Africa. This study has used a realist evaluation (RE) approach to explore impact not as a direct result of an intervention or input, but in relation to the context in which a programme intervention takes place and the reasoning of its beneficiaries. In this way, realist evaluation breaks down pathways of change into a series of outcomes and triggering mechanisms, allowing the identification of those factors that drive the use of financial services and trigger their impacts. This summary presents the main findings on impact and drivers of change for SaveAct savings groups programme and indigenous stokvels.