Stories tagged with Kenya

Nov 11, 2015 GO Global Update
It’s been a week when reports of shocking terrorist atrocities (Paris, Beirut, Nigeria – and, as I write, Mali) have been dominating our news bulletins and social media feeds. And it’s been followed, of course, with the usual analysis around how best to tackle the issue: border closures, refugee expulsions, states of emergency and air strikes seem depressingly to the fore.
But in this fevered climate, I found it refreshing to see another different, inspiring approach to the challenge, that is being implemented by Hand in Hand... Continue Reading >>
Nov 11, 2015 KE Kenya
It’s rainy season here in Nairobi, and the dirt roads of Mukuru - one of the largest informal settlements in the city - have turned into thick muddy footpaths and fast flowing streams. The watery scene is a stark reminder of the near total lack of drainage systems and sanitation services, as all forms of waste are distributed in the swampy conditions. According to the UN, nearly 56% of all city dwellers in Kenya live in these slum-type conditions.   

The Kiva partner Sanergy is one organization taking on the sanitation problem in Mukuru and other slums throughout... Continue Reading >>
May 5, 2015 KE Kenya
Meeting borrowers may be the best part of being a Kiva Fellow. It's an incredibly enriching experience where we get to learn about the borrowers' lives; they all have businesses, homes, families, hopes, and dreams. Each of the dozens of farmers I met in Kenya had their own unique stories and here are a few of my favorites.

Benedate wants to help her neighbors improve their farms

Benedate is an entrepreneurial farmer with a variety of income streams to support her six children including maize,... Continue Reading >>
May 5, 2015 KE Kenya
Conducting Borrower Verifications is one of the main responsibilities for many Kiva Fellows. A BV is essentially an audit of a borrower to ensure that they're a real person using their Kiva loan for its stated purpose and to assess its impact on their life. Needless to say, there's quite a few adventures to be had while spending three weeks on the road to do twenty BVs in Western Kenya. The following is an entry from my personal journal recounting one particularly trying day on the road.
May 4, 2015
Homa Bay, Kenya

We had a plan for my last set of...
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Apr 4, 2015 KE Kenya

It was early Thursday morning, and I was in Kibera on a borrower visit with one of our trustees and two other Fellows. It was around 10AM when I take out my phone to check the time. I see a text from my sister asking if I know anyone in Garissa. Garissa? Why would she be asking me about a random city in Kenya? I shut my phone thinking I’ll respond later so...

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Mar 3, 2015 KE Kenya
For three days in February, I visited Kiva borrowers in Nyanza Province near Lake Victoria in the southwest of Kenya. The visits took me to the city of Kisii and the nearby towns of Nyamira and Kenyenya via countless pickup truck, boda-boda, and matatu rides. Although it was invaluable to see a side of Kenya other than my base of Nairobi, the remoteness of the region gave me a new appreciation for the hard work that Kiva partners put in to service our clients.

A typical farm road in Kisii County
... Continue Reading >>
Dec 12, 2014 KE Kenya

One of the highlights of the Kiva Fellowship is the opportunity to live somewhere far from home and learn about a new culture. I've met dozens of Kiva Zip trustees and borrowers during my three months in Kenya and unexpectedly forged a strong connection with one in particular. I first met Joseph* when he visited the Kiva office for a trustee interview. Joseph has an extensive background of community development and now continues his work as a pastor in Kenya, providing financial and educational services to his community. As a civic leader, he is a typical trustee that puts a great amount...

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Nov 11, 2014 KE Kenya
For my Kiva Fellowship I was very lucky to have been placed with One Acre Fund, one of Kiva’s Field Partners in Kenya. I have been in this beautiful country serving as a Fellow for a month and a half, learning about microfinance and its impact at a local level and... I think it’s time for an update!

About One Acre Fund

One Acre Fund is a non-profit organization that supplies smallholder farmers with the tools and financing they need to grow their way out of hunger...
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Oct 10, 2014 KE Kenya

One of the best parts of the Kiva Fellowship is the anticipation while awaiting the location of your placement, which could be nearly anywhere Kiva loans are available. Wouldn’t it be great to stroll by the Taj Mahal on the way to work, gallop on horseback through the plains of Mongolia, or take in a sunset on a Samoan beach?

... Continue Reading >>
Sep 9, 2014 GO Global Update

I have been in Kenya for almost 4 months now for my fellowship. Some of my time was spent in Nairobi, and some in western and rural parts of the country. Getting around by motorbike (“piki piki” or “boda boda”) is a way of life in Kenya. But I’ve never seen a female driver. Granted, it’s not an everyday occurrence in the western world either, but motorcycles in general are also not nearly so common.

Arriving in Kisumu, I thought I’d give it a try. After moving into my apartment I stepped outside to head for a grocery store. I saw a man with a kind face starting up his boda... Continue Reading >>