roselarsen

Rose grew up in San Francisco and attended UC Berkeley, where she earned a BA in Economics with a minor in Spanish. She developed an interest in Latin America and economic development while in college, which led her to study abroad in Argentina for a semester and travel across Chile, Uruguay and Bolivia. After graduating, she worked for a few years arranging tours and vacations within the United States, before transitioning into nonprofit work with an internship in Kiva's San Francisco office, working with the Fellows Program team. After four months in Colombia, she is excited to continue her fellowship in the Dominican Republic!

Fellows Blog Posts by roselarsen

Jun 6, 2013 DO Dominican Republic

by Rose Larsen | KF20 | Dominican Republic

The Dominican Republic may be a small island nation in the Caribbean, but it has a quickly growing economy based on a shift from exports of sugar, coffee and tobacco to services like telecommunications and tourism.

However, according to a study done by the OECD in 2012, this economic growth has been limited by deficits in human capital – more specifically, the education levels of workers are insufficient.

This problem stems from the low quality of primary and secondary...

Continue Reading >>


Apr 11, 2013 DO Dominican Republic

by Rose Larsen | KF20 | Dominican Republic

One of my first tasks upon arriving in the Dominican Republic was to visit 10 borrowers, chosen at random from all of the borrowers with ASPIRE (Kiva’s partner MFI), to verify data and find out how they are doing on their loan. This was an exciting but challenging introduction to daily Dominican life, as I navigated Santo Domingo and the surrounding areas via shared taxis, public buses, motorcycles, the metro and my own feet. I traversed bustling neighborhoods in the center of Santo Domingo, small towns in...

Continue Reading >>


Mar 12, 2013 CO Colombia

Quien lo goza, lo vive! He who lives it, enjoys it!

by Rose Larsen | KF19 Colombia | KF20 Dominican Republic

Barranquilla goes through something of a transformation in the months leading up to Carnaval.

Carnaval is the one period of the year when Barranquilla becomes a tourist destination.  For four days each February or March, the city fills up with travelers eager to experience what is known as “the best Carnaval outside of Brazil.”

...

Continue Reading >>


Feb 6, 2013 CO Colombia, HN Honduras, US United States

By Rose Larsen, KF19 Colombia, with excerpts provided by Wesley Schrock, KF19 Honduras, and Luan Nio, KF18 Nicaragua/KF19 United States

Loan officers are the hidden heroes behind the Kiva model.

Lenders, borrowers, Kiva staff and Kiva fellows all show their beautiful faces somewhere on Kiva.org, and while Kiva’s field partners have profiles of their own, there is little explanation or clarity behind who actually, physically, goes to the clients’ businesses, evaluates their requests, delivers loans and picks up repayments (hint: it’s loan officers!)....

Continue Reading >>


Jan 22, 2013 CO Colombia

Rose Larsen | KF19 | Colombia

After traveling for almost a month over Christmas holidays, I was struggling to figure out why I was so happy to be back “home” in Barranquilla, the hot, humid, chaotic city on the Caribbean coast of Colombia that I’ve been living in for the past 4 months. I had just visited places of incredible beauty like:

Montezuma, Costa Rica

Isla Ometepe, Nicaragua

and Medellin, Colombia.

But as much fun as I had, none of these places measured up.

Then I read the news and everything made sense.

... Continue Reading >>


Dec 18, 2012 CO Colombia

Rose Larsen | KF19 | Colombia

San Jacinto de Bolivar, San Juan Nepomuceno and El Carmen de Bolivar are three tiny towns located in the same department of Colombia as Cartagena, though they are almost entirely ignored by the hordes of tourists who descend upon the “jewel of the Caribbean” each year.

The streets of San Jacinto de Bolivar

San Juan Nepomuceno’s...

Continue Reading >>


Nov 15, 2012 CO Colombia

Rose Larsen | KF19 | Colombia

For me, this story starts two years ago, long before I ever dreamed of doing a Kiva fellowship. At the time, I was working at a small travel agency in San Francisco and took a much-needed vacation to Cartagena, which I had read was a UNESCO World Heritage site composed of colonial houses, bright colors and beautiful beaches.

Colonial center of Cartagena de Indias

The best beach in the area was reputed to be Playa Blanca, so I...

Continue Reading >>


Oct 23, 2012 CO Colombia

Rose Larsen | KF19 | Colombia

It is fair to say that every Kiva Fellow is excited about “going out into the field.” Meeting the local entrepreneurs who are using microfinance to grow their tiny businesses is the primary reason many of us gave up jobs, apartments, and lives in our home countries to volunteer our time abroad for 4 months.

What we are looking for is a personal connection, the ability to put a face to the erudite name of microfinance. We are dying to hear firsthand how, through Kiva, someone has been given new opportunities, and has used these to...

Continue Reading >>


LendingOnKiva