With few exceptions, Kiva borrowers have greeted my visits to their homes and businesses with the sentiment captured in the blog title, that is to say with skepticism and unease. Visits can start awkwardly and end awkwardly. But sometimes they inspire; borrowers graciously share their story – their successes and struggles, their hopes and fears – with a complete stranger...Continue Reading >>
Stories tagged with blogsherpa
Luckily I’m here in Bolivia for one of the most important celebrations of the year so I jumped at the chance to witness the Todos Santos holiday up close and personal. My previous knowledge was limited to piecemeal notions imported from Mexico, but here in Bolivia this special celebration takes on its own particular traditions dating back centuries and is deeply rooted in Andean cosmology.
...Continue Reading >>
Taline Khansa | KF19 | Jordan
Jordan has been my home for the past five weeks, and in this short time I’ve felt more than welcomed by newly gained friends, Tamweelcom’s staff, borrowers, and strangers alike. Every day holds its share of new faces and places, introducing me to people from diverse professional and socio-economic backgrounds. The one common factor among all is an innate sense of hospitality that always leaves me loving and appreciating the people of Jordan more and more.... Continue Reading >>
Exactly one month has passed since I arrived in Nairobi, Kenya. As a complete newbie in Africa, I had no idea what to expect when I first landed at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport.
Before my arrival, I had done some research about the country that was going to be my home for the coming months. A quick google search on Nairobi informed me that Kenya’s capital is the 12th largest one in Africa, the name Nairobi is a Maasai phrase that translates to “cold water” and it’s located 1,800 meters above sea level. My internet search also informed me that...Continue Reading >>
In the past month, I’ve worn my soles thin pounding the pavement visiting Kiva borrowers in the major cities of La Paz, Cochabamba and Santa Cruz. I’ve come to love and trust the Kiva microfinance institutions (MFI’s) I’m working with here and would recommend them hands down to any prospective borrower out there.
Yet everywhere I go I can’t help but notice the seemingly endless storefront banners offering cheap credit, personal loans, instant money advances. In large cities and small towns I see consumer banks, community cooperatives, microcredit institutions, pawn brokers...Continue Reading >>
I’m piggybacking Holly’s great blog on Eid al-Adha – i.e. Tabaski – to give you a peek into how another West African country celebrates this highly anticipated holiday. Turns out, as you will learn, the brouhaha differs a bit from place to place.
My introduction to Tabaski began several weeks ago when I arrived for my first day at UIMCEC. Within the first 30 minutes of being seated at my desk, conversation with my supervisor was interrupted twice by clients seeking to take out loans for Tabaski. Both times, my supervisor shot me a look of: “Much more of this to come…”
Even...Continue Reading >>
Expanding Access to Higher Education in Kenya:
In January of 2012, Kiva, a microlending platform that aims to alleviate poverty by connecting lenders with borrowers who do not have access to traditional banking, partnered with Strathmore University, Kenya’s premier, private college, to launch a groundbreaking partnership in the financing...Continue Reading >>
Today is Tabaski, the Muslim holiday which celebrates the festival of the sacrifice. The day honors the prophet Abraham’s willingness to sacrafice his first born son as an act of submission to God until God intervened and allowed him to sacrafice a ram instead.
Last night I...Continue Reading >>
Abhishesh Adhikari | KF19 | Kyrgyzstan
It has now been three weeks since I landed at Bishkek’s Manas International Airport. It’s amazing how many new things I have experienced and learned in such a short amount of time: a completely different culture, new friends, exotic food, interesting Soviet architecture, the Russian language, and many more. I am now glad to add a new item to that list: my...Continue Reading >>
Guard dogs, long hikes and broken-down motos are just a few of the obstacles we face on our hunt to track down new Kiva borrowers.
Along with my trustee co-pilot/loan officer/BFF, Juan Carlos, we’ve managed to catch up with 28 new borrowers this month, and the quest to do-so has been nothing short of an adventure.
In the majority of cases, we’re given a hand-drawn map at...Continue Reading >>