Fellows Blog Posts by ashleyolivia

Jun 17, 2009 NI Nicaragua

Ashley Nelsen KF 7/8 Nicaragua

The latest news from Nicaragua has unfortunately been the decision by the United Nations to cancel $62 million dollars worth to funds destined to assist in the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). The MDGs are eight goals created by the United Nations to combat some of the developing world’s most pressing problems such as improved access to education and health. The decision to revoke the funds is a direct result of electoral fraud that occurred last fall during the mayoral elections. People were denied access to vote, votes were not counted, and many...

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Jun 3, 2009 DO Dominican Republic

By Ashley Nelsen KF7/8 DR and Nicaragua

If Kiva had green microloans would you support one?  I am different from the “traditional” Kiva Fellow in the sense that I am spending my last semester of graduate school working full time as a fellow while researching the possibility of using microfinance to fund green or environmental microloans for my thesis.  Ideally, green microloans would work to improve income generation, health, and environmental conditions of the world’s poor.

The world’s poor interact on a daily basis with their natural surroundings, and depend on the natural...

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May 15, 2009 NI Nicaragua

by Ashley Nelsen

Do you think you could you start a thriving general store from a single 25 pound sack of sugar?  Gloria María Ramírez Herrera did and recently told me how. Unwilling to sign her house as collateral for a traditional bank loan, she knew she would have to start her business on her own, and start small. Gloria saved up little by little and purchased a single 25 pound sack of sugar and began selling it out of the front window of her house. That’s where the MFI Asociación Alternativa Para el Desarrollo Integral de las Mujeres (ADIM) stepped in to assist. Gloria used her...

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May 2, 2009 DO Dominican Republic

-More than micro finance

by Ashley Nelsen KF 6 & 7

The power of micro finance is the social programs that leave lasting improvements within entrepreneurs lives. While working in the Dominican Republic with the MFI Esperanza I witnessed first hand the impact of such social programs. Esperanza whose social programs include business training for their entrepreneurs, a savings program, affordable health care and insurance, vocational trainings, and loans for housing improvements ensure that their clients not only improve their economic livelihood, but are better educated,...

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Mar 23, 2009 DO Dominican Republic

Many people have expressed desire to see more Haiti loans. In response, I would like to explain what is currently taking place. Presently all Haiti loans must go through the Esperanza office in the Dominican Republic. This is because the Esperanza Haiti office (located in Cape Haitian) is not yet a recognized MFI. Kiva and Esperanza are working to finalize this and train staff on Kiva protocol. Not being a recognized MFI has limited our ability to post Haiti loans. BUT, I can say that starting in April (and beyond) we will begin to regularly post Haiti Esperanza loans. Instead of rushing...

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Feb 26, 2009

I had a wonderful time in Haiti, despite the major challenges the country faces. The people, culture, music, art, food and colors kept me fascinated the short time I was there. Kiva will soon be working in Haiti with the amazing help of Esperanza/Hope International! I was given the opportunity to see micro finance in action, and I was impressed.

We visited two communities that have received Esperanza micro loans. It was interesting to see how each entrepreneur had such a niche market. For example, one gentleman we talked to bought phone cards and then resold them at...
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Jan 30, 2009 DO Dominican Republic

After approximately a year of waiting I finally made it to my destination: the micro finance institute (MFI) Esperanza/Hope International located in balmy, beautiful Santo Domingo! Kalie Gold (another Kiva Fellow) and Analin (Kiva Coordinator) have been gracious enough to show me the ropes, and there is plenty to do. Right now we are currently working on designing a short training course for getting better profile pictures, more journal updates, getting documents sent on a timely manner, etc.

I was really excited to learn that Esperanza/Hope International are getting ready to launch...

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Sep 18, 2008

Hi my name is Ashley and I am a Kiva Fellow in class KF6.

I do have to say that I am jealous of my Kiva Fellows peers who know where they are going and with whom they will be working with, but I know that fate (a.ka. Michelle my Kiva manager) has something great in store for me! I am not leaving til January, but am getting antsy to leave already.

Training has been especially inspiring. The Kiva staff has been incredibly welcoming, and there is no other place I would want to be than right here in San Francisco working for such an amazing non-profit!

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