Stories tagged with KF10 (Kiva Fellows 10th Class)

Aug 8, 2010 BJ Benin

Benin is a country not often in the news.  When I was a Kiva Fellow placed there, I’d come to appreciate this.  It meant we didn’t have the political instability of Togo, the violence of Nigeria, or the food shortages of Niger.  While Benin still had many flaws, it was stable compared to its neighbors.  This gave it hope for the future – hope for growth and international investment.

On Thursday, a story about Benin reached the New York Times.  That article, “Scheme May Unmoor Benin, An Anchor of Stability,” has prompted me to write you.  While it’s nice...

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Aug 8, 2010 TG Togo
 
By Leah Gage, KF 10 in Ukraine & KF11 in Togo
 

Today is my last day as a Kiva Fellow. Kiva Fellows Class number 10 (or KF10) took me to Zaporozhye, Ukraine where I worked with Kiva’s field partner HOPE Ukraine; KF11 brought me here to Lomé, Togo, where I work with two different field partners, Microfund Togo and Women and Associations for Gain both Economic and Social, or WAGES. I can’t think of two countries more...

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Aug 8, 2010

With the political turmoil that stopped everything in the city a couple months ago behind us Mothers Day in Thailand brings a sense of calm over the Kingdom; except on the roadways, it’s hell there. With massive amounts of tourists flocking out of Bangkok for the extended holiday due to Her Majesty’s birthday the roadways around Bangkok and up-country are clogged with weekend warriors desperate to escape the hustle of the city for fresh air and no-vacancy hotel stays. The streets are empty around Bangkok it seems that everyone is leaving Bangkok, everyone except for...

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Aug 8, 2010

By Lyel Resner, KF11 Peru

With its bottom-up approach to development, and significant demonstrated success in places like Bangladesh, microfinance has begun to emerge as an increasingly popular development model. The surprisingly strong ability of much of the world´s working poor to meet their credit obligations has also brought attention to microfinance as an attractive investment vehicle. The result has been an explosion of microfinance providers across the developing world, and a fast-blurring line between and strictly profit-seeking and more social- oriented...

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Aug 8, 2010

By Peter Marchant, KF12 Zambia

Maize is a staple of the Zambian diet. On average, each Zambian consumes about 200 kilograms of the stuff each year. Farmers across the country grow maize on small plots, but they often find it difficult to sell their crop at a profit.

Zambia is sparsely irrigated, so farmers plant nearly all of the maize in the country at the start of the rainy season in late October or November and harvest when the rains let up. The market is flooded with maize at harvest time (roughly may to July) and prices fall by as much as 30%. The government...

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Aug 8, 2010

By Cheney Wells, KF 11

Finishing up my Kiva fellowship in Sri Lanka was a bittersweet experience. My relationship with both Kiva, and with their field partner, the ever-efficient BRAC, has been a positive one. I believe I made tangible contributions to the relationship between the two organizations, and through those efforts, learned a great deal. I enhanced some of the hard technical skills that I had expected to improve on the job (financial reports, Excel), and also had the chance to learn valuable soft-skills that I had not anticipated needing when I set off for Sri...

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Aug 8, 2010 KE Kenya

Kiva Field Partner Juhudi Kilimo has been nominated by Changemakers and Artemisia as a model of how to build the field of social business. Juhudi qualified as one of 448 entries from 78 countries as an outstanding demonstration of innovation, social impact, and sustainability.

Vote now until August 11 to help them win $5000. The winner will be announced on August 18th.

Juhudi Kilimo is an innovative social enterprise working with small-holder farmers in Kenya. They became a Kiva Field Partner in January 2010 and have already posted over $250,000 in loans on Kiva....

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Jul 7, 2010 CO Colombia

By David Connelly, KF10 Peru/KF11 Colombia

In Barranquilla you have to seriously reevaluate your plans when it rains. Or as a friend nonchalantly told me: “Unlike other cities where rain means ‘don’t forget the umbrella,’ here in Barranquilla it means ‘don’t leave home.’” Arroyos. The word means “stream,” or at least that’s what I thought when I arrived here on Colombia’s Caribbean coast. But people kept mentioning how these arroyos pop up any time it rains, how big they get, how they have their own...

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Jul 7, 2010

By: Kimia Raafat

I had my doubts about microfinance in San Francisco. Having 7 months of work experience at microfinance institutes in Ecuador and Paraguay, the images I associated with South American field visits (see two photos below) included cane homes, wooden kiosks, rural shops and unpaved roads—slightly different from the “techy”, modern Silicon Valley/San Francisco state of mind.

Field Visits in Ecuador

The cliche microfinance story goes as...

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Jul 7, 2010 SL Sierra Leone

Surfing the tattered pages of this blog, one is able to read about MFIs operating in saturated markets.

Sierra Leone as a whole is decidedly not such a market, but I sometimes suspect that certain segments have reached a point where you get a rapidly decreasing measure of development for your microfinance Leone. A quick survey of the Kiva portfolio of ARD and LAPO, SL reveals that a majority of clients operate businesses in the retail sector and many of these deal in the same products – Maggi cubes, plastic ware, soap, palmoil, smoked fish ect. Now there is absolutely nothing wrong...

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