How is Kiva Zip, a direct lending program based on the internet and mobile money transfers, working without the aid of micro-finance institutions on the ground? It begins with and is upheld by one important group of individuals: local community members we train to be trustees.As we near our two year anniversary and celebrate our climbing repayment rate, now at 92%, we would like to honor our top-performing partners through a series of... Continue Reading >>
Stories tagged with Kenya
Earlier this month Kiva Zip celebrated a milestone of having disbursed its 1,000th loan to entrepreneurs in Kenya. What is unique about the Kiva Zip model is that it is a direct, person-to-person lending platform with 0% interest loans and no fees for the borrowers (learn more here!). We are very excited about the tremendous progress we have made and about the improvements we continue to make that allow us to better serve our borrowers, Trustees, and lenders.
Kiva Zip targets entrepreneurs with very small businesses and who can benefit from a loan as small as $50-$100...Continue Reading >>
Before I became a Kiva Fellow I was only an occassional lender with some dangerous assumptions about Kiva borrowers. These assumptions perpetuated my ignorance of borrower's creativity and business prowess. More importantly, they limited me from increasing my lending portfolio and thus limiting my impact on people's lives.
It has taken me 2 months in Kenya to... Continue Reading >>
If you are privileged enough to visit Nairobi, you can decide to approach the city out of fear and simply visit the airport, hotels, and expat bars.The other more rewarding option is to enjoy the vibrancy and rich culture of Nairobi (aka "Silicon Savannah") by using public transportation to navigate the capitol.
Make sure to remember a few things to lower your chances of over-paying, getting lost...Continue Reading >>
The media hype may be winding down but many of us here in Kenya are still shaken by the Westgate terrorist attack. While my own experience may not be as compelling as those in the news, it has left me with a deeper compassion for those who live in constant fear.
Early...Continue Reading >>
Are tablets a practical solution to rural microfinance operations?
This is the big question I am working to answer during my 4 months in beautiful Kenya. This appears to be a simple question with an obvious answer. However, after traveling over 1000 kilometers in one week throughout urban and rural Kenya, I have learned about the obstacles that will make tabletizing Kiva... Continue Reading >>
“I’m here for awhile,” I reply. “I’m working with a company that helps people get loans.”
Not surprisingly,...Continue Reading >>
Kenneth holds up his kerosene lantern and proudly says, “I won’t need this one anymore!” He wipes the dust off the table and asks us to sit down. We follow his offer and start listening to his story....Continue Reading >>
I arrived to a tiny, dusty roadside stand with three wooden stalls and a few locals hanging around. This was Matutu, a small village in Western Kenya. I hoped this Matutu anyway. There were no signs, and it isn’t on Google maps. A boda boda driver took me to my meeting point. A school somewhere nearby.
As we drove down the dusty, dirt roads, I was mesmerized by the scenery of lush, green, rolling hills. And the locals were equally enamored with me. Group after group of children running behind... Continue Reading >>
The midday sun was at its height, and as we throttled down miles of dusty country roads, the wind kicked up streaks of earth that colored my clothes red and coursed through my hair. Sitting on the very back of the motorbike, with Aditi sandwiched in-between me and the driver, I grasped for the metal bar behind me with one hand, and with the other, waved at an ever-evolving panorama of fruit sellers, truck drivers... Continue Reading >>