clairemarkham

Fellows Blog Posts by clairemarkham

Nov 14, 2011 KE Kenya

By Claire Markham, KF16, Kenya

In Kenya, the act of going green appears to be far less of a priority than it is in more developed green economies. In the first part of this blog series, I discussed the cultural barriers that exist in Kenya. In this second part, I attempt to answer the question of how an MFI can break through the obstacles identified in Part 1 to implement a successful green and water loan program. I certainly don’t have all of the answers, but I will describe certain strategies that can be used.

Frame of Reference: Me vs. we, now vs. later...

Continue Reading >>


Oct 20, 2011 KE Kenya

By Claire Markham, KF16, Kenya

In the developed world, the recent increased attention to global warming and the importance of environmental preservation and restoration efforts is something that’s hard to ignore.  It’s because of this ongoing Environmental Revolution that the majority of the population is aware of the increasing need to pay attention to our footprint. Regardless of whether or not people actually do their part or even believe in global warming, most people have at least been educated of the potential consequences of neglecting the environment and the harm we...

Continue Reading >>


Sep 29, 2011 KE Kenya

By Claire Markham, KF16, Kenya

Before I arrived in Nairobi, I had heard on multiple occasions about the fundamental role loan officers play in making an MFI function. Loan officers are the backbone of the organization; they are intimately familiar with their clients and the challenges they face and they go to extraordinary measures to meet client needs. I was able to fully appreciate this on my recent borrower visits in Mombasa with two of SMEP Deposit Taking Microfinance Limited’s loan officers: the one who supposedly travels the most, and the one who supposedly travels...

Continue Reading >>


Sep 7, 2011 KE Kenya

By Claire Markham, KF16, Kenya

On Kiva’s website, the description of why Kiva does what it does is as follows:

We envision a world where all people – even in the most remote areas of the globe – hold the power to create opportunity for themselves and others.

We believe providing safe, affordable access to capital to those in need helps people create better lives for themselves and their families.

Last Thursday, I had the opportunity to spend a day with a loan officer with SMEP’s Nairobi Central branch, and we traveled to...

Continue Reading >>