Fellows Blog Posts by jennifermarie88

Jan 18, 2011 KE Kenya

In the past decade, the African nation of Sudan was in the news because of massive violence in the region of Darfur. Today, the world watches as the country takes part in a referendum on the south’s potential secession from the north. Voting has gone on for one week and finished this past Sunday. In some areas of the south, over 80% of registered voters took part, and the stringent requirement of 60% total turnout needed for validity of the vote has been surpassed.

Relations between the north and south have historically been strained, not least because of the racial and...

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Dec 22, 2010 KE Kenya

In the summer of 2009, I spent a few weeks in the small East African nation of Rwanda. I was there as a student as well as an observer, one who could testify to others about conditions in Rwanda today. Like in any country, various standards of living could be found, from upper-class mansions to poverty-stricken slums. However, never before had I seen these extremes exist so closely together.

 More often than not, poverty is the result of circumstances difficult to change. Although people can be very resourceful in making the best of what they have, the trap of poverty is difficult...

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Nov 26, 2010

The town of Murang’a is a rural respite from the commotion of Nairobi, Kenya’s bustling capital. Our car deftly handled the curvy roads, throwing up dust in its wake on the way to the group loan meeting.

Kiva collaborates with microfinance institutions all over the world to facilitate loans to small-business entrepreneurs. One of its partners, Juhudi Kilimo, focuses on giving agricultural loans to small-scale farmers across Kenya and has a branch in the town of Murang’a.

The outskirts of Murang’a, an hour drive outside of Nairobi...

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