RAFI (Rural & Agricultural Finance Initiative) Note #1 begins the series by discussing the benefits and challenges of two approaches in rural and agricultural finance: the financial sector approach and the value chain approach. The Note proposes a complementary approach that builds off the strengths of using both a financial sector lens and a value chain lens. RAFI Notes, a product of USAID’s Rural and Agricultural Finance Initiative, is a series of technical notes that informs USAID Missions and partners about the critical questions and potential solutions related to rural and agricultural finance services. RAFI Notes are practical, concise briefs informed by recent thinking and historical experience. Several overview pieces begin the series, followed by technical notes on topics of interest ranging from the role of government to focused topics such as warehouse receipts systems. For more information on the RAF Initiative, please contact Anicca Jansen of the USAID Microenterprise Development office.