More than 3,300 people from 77 countries entered this year's photography competition run by the Consultative Group to Assist the Poor (CGAP), a World Bank initiative that advocates for more financial services in vulnerable communities. According to the group, there are nearly two billion people around the world who lack access to basic banking. Their annual photo competition aims to document the struggles and successes of those business owners outside the system.
"I appreciate that the photographers understand the work they were producing has the power to directly impact and improve the lives of one or many," competition judge Nicole Crowder, the photo editor of The Washington Post's photography blog In Sight, said of the photographers’ work. The grand prize winner will receive a $2,000 gift certificate for photography equipment and his image will be displayed on the Times Square Jumbotron in New York City.
Below, is a selection of images by the winners and the honorable mentions as well as caption information provided by CGAP. Each prize, either for a designated theme or region, preceeds the caption.