Dec 4, 2013 AM Armenia

Over the past few weeks, I have had the privilege of working with Liz Fish, Kiva Media Fellow, in Armenia.  Liz has come with me on borrower verifications, and I have come with her on media visits.  Together we have met more borrowers than either one of us would have alone. Working in the offices of SEF and Nor Horizon, Kiva’s partners in Armenia, is great because it is obvious that the staff at both feel passionate about their work in helping low-income Armenians improve their businesses, expand their agriculture, and get an education.  As satisfying as the office work is, it... Continue Reading >>


Dec 2, 2013 GO Global Update

For much of the world, food is fuel.  But far more than mere sustenance, food draws us together. It slows our pace and brightens each day.  Calling upon all five senses, cusine reaches deep into our psyche and becomes woven into our memory.  Futhermore, the art of preparing food is often an act of service, a vocation of creativity, or a labor of love. Each distinct culture draws upon its geographical pantry to afford...

Continue Reading >>


Nov 29, 2013 ID Indonesia

Filming for Kiva, Indonesia TAKE TWO (Injuries happen)
Father Charlie and I. Photo credit: Yungkit
Saturday started off as a great day. We met Father Charlie (See Filming for Kiva Indonesa TAKE ONE for more info) at the Church that morning to interview him about YSBS. His interview was sincere, thought-provoking and heart-warming. You could tell that he was used to the camera and spoke like a seasoned pro.
...
Continue Reading >>


Nov 29, 2013 EC Ecuador

In the United States, during these months a traditional holiday meal usually includes a roasted turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing, rolls, salad, and lots of dessert. For the US holiday of Thanksgiving, this menu is so traditional that many do not even consider being able to fully celebrate Thanksgiving unless there is turkey involved. As most countries have their traditional holiday meals, right now in Ecuador many areas preparing for their traditional feast as the December holidays are right around the corner. Instead of fattening up turkeys like in the US, many small farmers in Ecuador are... Continue Reading >>


Nov 29, 2013 KE Kenya

People say the train to Mombasa is a poor choice.  It is a 16 hr. ride on average (bus is 9 hrs), when or if it leaves the station. Nick-named the “lunatic express” the Kenya Railway was built nearly a century ago and got its name after going insanely over budget. During construction over 2,500 workers died (malaria, lions, exhaustion) in an attempt to expand access to East Africa’s interior.  Today the railroad runs between Mombasa, Nairobi and Kisumu. If it leaves the station and you have some flexibility in your schedule, it’s a beautiful way to see the Kenyan countryside.... Continue Reading >>


Nov 27, 2013 KE Kenya

Last month, Kiva Zip Kenya proudly hosted the inaugural meeting of our Trustee Advisory board. Six top trustees are now taking on leadership roles as board members, creating more cohesion between key players in the program and helping guide its future.  

The board will provide feedback on product changes and participate in decision-making on topics such as communication practices, borrower-trustees, and trainings. Together with Kiva Staff, they will meet monthly to discuss best practices surrounding the Zip program and voice constructive ideas for...

Continue Reading >>


Nov 27, 2013 AL Albania, BR Brazil, CO Colombia, DE Germany, HT Haiti

As surprised as my family and friends were when I told them that I’m heading off to Kyrgyzstan, that’s about as surprised as my Kiva colleagues were when they found out that I’m also heading to Frankfurt, for a portion of my Kiva Fellowship. At first pass, Germany doesn’t seem like a country that would fit with Kiva’s non-profit microfinance orientation and mission statement. Yet, in Frankfurt, one of the world’s prominent financial centres, an innovative start-up and recent Kiva Field Partner, Yunus Social Business (“YSB”), is pushing the envelope of social business investing, globally and... Continue Reading >>


Nov 25, 2013 KE Kenya

One of the essential parts of the Kiva Zip model is the Trustee. Trustees are the organizations or individuals that work directly with Kiva Zip and help identify and support borrowers throughout the loan cycle. What those Trustees all have in common is that they are motivated by helping people and changing lives. Apart from that common vision, Trustees can differ a lot in terms of the services they provide. I have identified another commonality among several Kenyan Trustees, though - they not only help people but also the environment!

The Challenge One of the biggest...

Continue Reading >>


Nov 25, 2013 ID Indonesia

Filming for Kiva, Indonesia TAKE ONE
 
Where to begin? These past couple weeks in Indonesia passed by so quickly I don't even know where to start...
 
I suppose my journey in Indonesia began with us landing in Jakarta. Once landed, we had to spend a few hours sleeping at the airport before we made our way to the local train station. To all those who are considering staying at the airport or the train station overnight, make sure you choose the airport, because the train station was a bit sketchy. Luckily...
Continue Reading >>


Nov 22, 2013 SV El Salvador

Buenos dias a todos mis amigos. For the past two weeks I've been working with a tremendous new field partner in San Salvador, El Salvador called CONFRAS. CONFRAS (Confederation of Federations for Agrarian Reform in El Salvador in English) was founded in the 1980's during the El Salvadorean Civil War to further land reform efforts. Since then, it has grown to represent 100+ cooperatives that provide various services to over 4,000 farmers throughtout El Salvador. One cooperative with whom I've been working directly is ACAF. ACAF provides not only microcredit, but technical assistance and... Continue Reading >>


Pages

LendingOnKiva