Stories tagged with microfinance

Feb 2, 2016 PK Pakistan
Rizwana Tabbasum with her products displayed
Yesterday, during visiting last client of Kiva’s partner, ‘Kashf foundation’ for Borrower Verification Process.  I visited an other Kiva client home, Rizwana Tabasum. Though she was not included in my BV list, I felt fortunate to have a meeting & greeting with this simple lady.

After walking from a very congested street of Haripur village, Pakistan, all of my tirdness got vanished once I have seen her excellent work.  The talented lady is making... Continue Reading >>
Feb 2, 2016 PA Panama
This week I had the privilege of visiting many Kiva borrowers in the Chiriquí province of Panama. It is a rich area made up of beautiful coast, steep mountains, plentiful farmland, and abundant rainbows.

A giant rainbow in the skies over Chiriquí, Panama

In Panama, Kiva loans are disbursed through a local partner organization (named EDESA) to local credit unions, which in turn give loans to their members. In Spanish, these credit unions are called “empresas de crédito," or "ECs" for... Continue Reading >>
Feb 2, 2016 GH Ghana
Last week I met the ladies of Sorlimor Group in Chorkor, an overpopulated fishing area in Greater Accra.  After numerous tro tros (three in two hours!) the loan officer and I finally arrived at the meeting spot (for more information on tro tros; what they are and what it is like riding them, see Kadri’s blog entry here).

At the moment, I am working with ID Ghana (a Microfinance institution that partners with Kiva) who mainly disburse group loans in Accra.  Issuing a loan in a group...
Continue Reading >>
Jan 1, 2016 GO Global Update
In the movie Taken Liam Neeson says, “I don’t have money.  But what I do have is a set of very particular skills that makes me a nightmare for someone like you.”  Kiva is about altruism, not vengeance, but our Fellows are just as skilled (in a non-violent way) as any ex-spy.
Many people assume that all foreign travel is basically a beach vacation, and anyone could do it if they just had the time or money.  One friend asked me, "Apart from speaking Spanish, what skills do you have?"  This got me curious about what special skills my fellow Fellows... Continue Reading >>
Dec 12, 2015 GO Global Update
Queens Courage on display at the sneak preview of Chris's fancy new distillery. Proof + Gauge at the Astoria Distilling Company will be open to the public in January 2016.

When I called former Kiva Zip borrower Chris Murillo earlier this week, he was taking off his construction respirator as he answered the phone. I could hear things being built in the background, the final touches on what he proudly told me will “be the first official craft distillery in Queens” come January 2016.
Chris... Continue Reading >>
Dec 12, 2015 RW Rwanda
Traveling is a feast for the mind, eyes, soul, and most of all, stomach. This is a post about what has kept my stomach happy in the last 3 months in East Africa; I’d like to share five East African foods that I’ve enjoyed.

1. Let’s start with the ubiquitous staple dish, the star player in almost every local restaurant – a heaping plate of various starches/carbs with a side of one or two pieces of meat if you want to treat yourself. This is a dish intended for the working man, strangely devoid of the... Continue Reading >>
Dec 12, 2015 EC Ecuador
The conventional definition of "Kiva magic" is when a borrower sees a printout of their Kiva profile and realizes, ecstatically, that they're involved in much more than an ordinary loan: dozens of strangers on the other side of the world have pledged them money on the strength of their photo and bio.  It's wonderful when this happens, and it makes inspiring photos and videos.  Yet in the course of visiting more than 25 borrowers, I've only witnessed this once.  In Peru and Ecuador at least, most borrowers are more overcome with bewilderment than joy.  In some sense this is... Continue Reading >>
Dec 12, 2015 PR Puerto Rico
Entering my last week as a Kiva Fellow in Puerto Rico, I want to share some insights as to what my experience has been like.

What surprised me the most is the number of amazing people I’ve met since I arrived, and the friendships built these past few months. I came here with no expectations, only with the desire to spend my time in a project that would contribute to another person’s dreams.

I can’t thank enough to Denisse Rodríguez, Kiva Fellow in Puerto Rico, for welcoming me so open heartedly. More than a colleague, I found a friend from whom I’ve learned a lot... Continue Reading >>
Dec 12, 2015 PR Puerto Rico
I’m from Costa Rica, a Spanish-speaking country, so I didn’t expect to have many language barriers during my time in Puerto Rico, but I was wrong. So, for anyone coming to Puerto Rico, this is my top 10 list of favorite Puerto Rican words and their meanings. If you know other words that should be on the list, please leave a comment.
A special thanks to the “corillo” of Foundation for Puerto Rico for teaching me most, if not all, of these words.
  • Jangueo: going out with your friends. You might’ve guessed it already, but it comes from the English “to hang out”. There is also...
  • Continue Reading >>
    Dec 12, 2015 US United States
    Lazy Eight Stock Farm in Paint Lick, KY

    As a newcomer to Kentucky, I’ve tried to head dive into the Louisville world as quickly, and with as much splash, as possible. Being the friendly place it is, Louisville dealt me a good hand right off the bat:...
    Continue Reading >>