lulatoussaint

Fellows Blog Posts by lulatoussaint

Feb 18, 2011 MX Mexico

By Lourdes Toussaint, KF13, Mexico

As my time as a Kiva Fellow comes to an end, I would like to sum up my experiences in Monterrey, a new city for me in my native country of Mexico. Initially, I was hesitant and scared of going to Northern Mexico given the safety issues that have been felt for the last few years. Shootings, kidnappings, and other forms of violence have become an everyday concern. Still, I decided to give it a try, at the end it is my country, and I really wanted to learn all about microcredit and its impact on people and poverty.

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Feb 2, 2011 MX Mexico

By Lourdes Toussaint, KF13, Mexico

In Mexico, food is probably one of the most important and common expressions of Mexican culture. Mexicans get from their food a sense of identity and pride that merges their country’s history, traditions, ingredients, and creativity. Just last year, UNESCO added Mexican food to the world’s intangible heritage list. According them, the knowledge and techniques of Traditional Mexican Cuisine, are a comprehensive cultural model that expresses community identity, reinforces social bonds, builds strong connections, and is an important means of...

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Jan 19, 2011 MX Mexico

By Lourdes Toussaint, KF13, Mexico.

In Mexico, social class is a powerful force that is present in almost every aspect of the Mexican life. Health, education, jobs, housing, financial services, and many other aspects are greatly influenced by the economic class to which one belongs. Class determines the quality and quantity of opportunities available to a person or a family. So as long as there is mobility, the movement of families up and down the economic ladder due to personal efforts and merit, we can say that there is something close to equality of opportunity...

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Dec 27, 2010 MX Mexico

By Lourdes Toussaint, KF13, Mexico.

The state of Chiapas, located in the southwest Mexico, is one of the most diverse regions in terms of demographics, language, food, geography and colors. It offers some of the most incredible and breathtaking sceneries with the archeological sites of Palenque, Bonampak, and Yaxchilan in the Lacandon Jungle; the beautiful colonial cities of San Cristobal de las Casas, Comitan and Chiapa de Corzo; the ecological reservations of the Sumidero Canyon, the Montebello Lakes, the Agua Azul Waterfalls and many other impressive natural landscapes...

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Dec 7, 2010 MX Mexico

By Lourdes Toussaint, KF13, Mexico

Access to credit, even on a small scale, can have a transforming effect on human lives. With this argument, Dr. Muhammad Yunus, the pioneer of microcredit and the founder of Grameen Bank, proposed that credit should be a human right. Yunus states that everyone should have access to credit without discrimination. His rationale is that when poor people have access to loans they are given the opportunity to launch businesses and lift their families out of poverty.

Dr. Yunus’ philosophy can be summarized with the term “financial...

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Nov 23, 2010 MX Mexico

By Lourdes Toussaint, KF13, Mexico

A few months back, the owner of Cemex, one of the biggest Mexican companies and one of the world’s largest cement firms, caused a stir in the country by stating in his twitter account that those who are leaving the city of Monterrey are “cowards”.  Due to the violence and the war between drug cartels in the north of the country, many people are choosing to leave this city. However, there are also many “non-cowards” or even “brave” people that are choosing to stay, to defend the city where they grew up and to continue with their work and...

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