I chose to be a Kiva Fellow so I could devote my time and skills to the cause to alleviate poverty and to have an experience of a lifetime. Fully aware that I may never have the opportunity to spend an extended period of time in the Philippines again, I also wanted to be sure that I took complete advantage of all that the country had to offer. At the top of my ‘To Do’ list was to become a scuba certified diver (and overcome my fear of being underwater). In order to check an item off my bucket list, I planned a weekend in Dumaguete, Negros, to get my scuba diving license. On the way I met...Continue Reading >>
Stories tagged with Philippines
It was a typical bright and sunny morning as I walked down the Talibon Pier towards the tiny boat that would take me island hopping for the day. I was greeted by six smiling loan officers already seated inside the boat; they watched as I maneuvered myself down steep sloping rocks, balanced on a beam to cross the water, and finally jumped onto the boat that would take me on an incredible forty-five minute ride through the Philippine Sea.
The water was calm, glistening under the sun’s rays. I couldn’t keep myself from uttering the same words over and over again: “This is so...Continue Reading >>
Anna Cleal, KF13, Uganda
Mindblank! Recently I have been at a loss for words, and haven’t felt so compelled to share anything on the blog. Instead I decided to focus my efforts on producing a video of my time in the field as a Kiva fellow. One of the most amazing parts of being a Kiva fellow is the beautiful meetings you have with microfinance clients. In these sessions you have the opportunity to chat with borrowers about anything and everything. At the end of an interview we all commonly ask borrowers what are their hopes and dreams for the...Continue Reading >>
Social performance management (SPM) has become an increasingly important topic in the microfinance sector – concerned donors, funders, and individuals alike have been paying close attention to how microfinance institutions (MFIs) balance their financial and social goals. In order to get clients’ perspectives, our team at Community Economic Ventures, Inc. (CEVI) conducted focus group discussions (FGDs) with members across the 5 CEVI branches in the province of Bohol.
We developed interview guides/modules based on the CERISE SPI tool – creating questions and group...Continue Reading >>
If you asked me what I have learned about microfinance during my Kiva Fellowship, I wouldn’t know where to start. I have learned that running a social business comes with its share of challenges. I have learned that technology will pave new ways for the future of microfinance. I have learned that the best microfinance organizations have their clients at the heart of all their activities. I could go on and on about my impressions of microfinance from the last six months…but in my final blog post, I will spare you. Instead, below I share with you my 5 favorite images (from the 1,667 photos I...Continue Reading >>
Since arriving in the Philippines in early November, just in time for the holiday season, I have been to my fair share of parties. None of them, however, quite compare to the event I attended this past weekend in Cauayan, as the Project Dungganon 1 branch office here celebrated its 21st annual Foundation Day 2.
The festivities kicked off with a Catholic Mass at 8.30 AM, and continued until 3.30 pm in the afternoon. The event was like no other – a hybrid of a party/annual meeting/talent show for all client-members of the Cauayan branch. NWTF’s directors travelled to Cauayan to take...Continue Reading >>
Dream big. Do you want to pay for your daughter’s university education? Do you want to throw a celebration for your son’s wedding? Do you want to make significant improvements to your house? Even if you are poor, these dreams can be possible through financial planning.
Noel, of the Client Services department, welcomes Dungganon members to the workshop
This week, I had the opportunity to take part in a two-day workshop for Project Dungganon* members on wealth management and savings generation – where clients were encouraged to think of future goals and how...Continue Reading >>
In our first week as Kiva trainees we were taught that microloans are not intended for the very poorest of the poor. Microfinance institutions target the unbankable poor, those who can benefit from a loan for an income-generating activity. There is another level of poverty below that, those who need emergency help for basic human needs. Many MFIs develop alternative services for this segment of the population. At...Continue Reading >>
Singing and videoke are a large part of the Filipino culture, as I have discovered over the past month and a half while working here. In my first week at the Negros Women for Tomorrow Foundation (NWTF), I was taken out by staff members to a nearby lounge – and being my first time there (as with all new patrons), was invited on to the stage to sing with the live band. Let’s just say my rendition of “California Gurls” does not quite compare to Katy Perry’s.
Since that first week, some of my most memorable experiences have involved videoke and singing, and I’d like to share a few of...Continue Reading >>
Today, in the wee hours of the morning, American shoppers queued up outside their favorite stores, waiting anxiously to get the holiday season’s best deals. As Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving, marks the beginning of the holiday shopping season in the USA, and is one of the most highly-trafficked days of the year for U.S. malls….I also found myself at the mall this Friday…though this mall was in the Philippines.Continue Reading >>