Stories tagged with Bolivia

Mar 3, 2011 BO Bolivia

Prolonged heavy rains have caused a hilltop to collapse in a poor neighborhood of the Bolivian capital, cracking roads, destroying at least 1500 homes and burying people’s belongings under mud. Slides are common in La Paz, perched at about 3.640 meters (11.900 ft) above sea level and surrounded by hills covered with poor communities. Heavy rains have been blamed for 44 deaths around the country in recent weeks.

Rainfalls caused a hilltop to collapse in a poor neighborhood of La Paz (Bolivian newspaper ‘La Razón’).

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Mar 3, 2011 BO Bolivia

Contributions from Kiva Fellows around the globe, compiled by Mei-ing Cheok.

Solidarity - A group of Ghanaian women after their weekly meeting with their loan officer

The beauty of microfinance is that it gives people at the wrong end of the income spectrum opportunities to step out of the poverty trap. It also provides women the confidence and security that comes from earning their own income, leading to greater gender equality.

Financially and...

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Feb 2, 2011 BO Bolivia

A few months ago, I wrote a blog post that drew on my experiences as a Kiva Fellow in Bolivia to discuss two points of criticism about microfinance, specifically from Aaron Ausland’s Huffington Post article, “How Microfinance Lost its Soul”. In this second installment, I will attempt to do the same, focusing on the portrayal of microfinance put forth by Tom Heinemann’s controversial documentary, The Micro Debt.

Supporters of microfinance seem to agree on two things about the film The Micro Debt:

(1) The discussion surrounding microfinance and its perceived and real impact,...

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Feb 2, 2011 BO Bolivia

Fellows wrote about visiting with borrowers and so much more (South African clients pictured above)

Members of the 14th class of Kiva Fellows have officially hit their stride. While we never know where the next dispatch will come from or what interesting topics the Fellows will cover next, we always know we’ll be transported, entertained, and edified. This past week, topics included “Christmas”, trekking to a remote village (with video!), handling adversity (...

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Feb 2, 2011 BO Bolivia

Kiva’s Bolivian field partner IMPRO is a small non-profit organization that has been offering micro credit to the working poor in the cities of La Paz and El Alto in Bolivia since 1995.

 

The central office of IMPRO in La Paz, Bolivia

IMPRO has 2147 clients of whom 45% are women. IMPRO serves clients in rural areas (11%) and in the cities La Paz (65%) and El Alto (24%) in Bolivia. 43% of IMPRO’s clients live from 1 dollar or less per day. 34% of its clients live in houses made of clay, 42% of the clients live in...

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Feb 2, 2011 BO Bolivia

A few months ago, I wrote a post discussing the advantages and drawbacks of financial institutions offering their clients healthcare services. Throughout the course of the past few months, my time spent working in ProMujer’s office has afforded me the opportunity to gain a deeper understanding of clients’ healthcare needs and the services provided to them by ProMujer.  A recent conversation with Ruth Apaza, the supervisor of all nurses in the El Alto region, shed light on ProMujer’s healthcare services: why it’s an important part of their model, how they work with the women, and the...

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Feb 2, 2011 BO Bolivia

Introduction

My name is Clara and I am from the Netherlands (there they call me Klaartje). I took a sabbatical from my job at KPMG in order to volunteer and travel in Bolivia, together with my husband. After being trained in San Francisco at the Kiva Headquarters, I arrived in La Paz two weeks ago. It’s great to be a Kiva ambassador, especially because Kiva’s mission is very appealing: “Connecting people through lending for the sake of alleviating poverty”.

That’s me in La Paz, Bolivia

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Jan 1, 2011 BO Bolivia

Kiva strives to connect microfinance borrowers and lenders from all corners of the globe – and one medium through which it is able to accomplish this is the Kiva Fellows blog. I would therefore like to dedicate this post to telling the story of Javier Aguilar Soto, the things I learned from meeting with him, and some broader lessons I gained, through the meeting, about the field of microfinance.

Presenting Javier

Javier lives in a rural area outside of the city of Cochabamba, Bolivia and is a client of the Microfinance Institution (MFI) CIDRE. He and his wife...

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Jan 1, 2011 AM Armenia

By Kiva Fellows, Various corners of the globe

Around the world, Kiva Fellows are celebrating the start of 2011 in all sorts of different ways. Here’s what some KF13-ers are doing to ring in the New Year.

Enjoy and Happy 2011!

Ellen Willems, Ecuador

Ecuadorians, as I was told, celebrate the coming of the New Year, and more importantly the going of the “Old Year” by making “monigotes”. These are dolls made of old clothes, stuffed with newspapers or sawdust and sometimes with fireworks as well. They have masks made of papier...

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Dec 12, 2010 BO Bolivia

As a Kiva Fellow and ardent believer in the poverty alleviating potential of microfinance, I make an effort to keep abreast the developments and discussions within the industry, both from the practical and academic side. While I find myself frustrated over negative articles or comments that oppose much what I am witnessing as a fellow on the ground, I must remind myself that this criticism can lead to constructive debates, and ultimately to advancements and improvements within the field.

The microfinance industry is certainly not without problems, as we have witnessed with recent...

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