Fellows Blog Posts by Samuel Baker

Mar 16, 2009 SV El Salvador

The leftist candidate Mauricio Funes won El Salvador’s presidential election last night, ending 20 years of rule by the rightist ARENA government. Funes’ party the FMLN had developed out of a Marxist inspired guerilla movement that opposed ARENA’s government 'during the country’s gruesome civil war in the 1980’s. While FMLN supporters took to the streets last night, riding into the capital on beat-up pickup trucks packed with red-shirted...

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Feb 10, 2009 SV El Salvador

Kiva is a “sexy”, high-tech cog in the economic development machine, conceived in where else but the dot-com capital of the world: Silcon Valley, California, USA, North America. At the very least I’m jealous at how Kiva seems to be a citizen of both the new “read the New York Times on your laptop in starbucks” and the traditional “Financial calculator at US AID” development worlds. Also, as a product of the AOL instant messenger generation, I would be the first to admit that I am incredibly energized by the emergence of social business, high-tech hybrids. Slick web pages, the same nifty...

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Feb 10, 2009 SV El Salvador

Kiva is a “sexy”, high-tech cog in the economic development machine, conceived in where else but the dot-com capital of the world: Silcon Valley, California, USA, North America. At the very least I’m jealous at how Kiva seems to be a citizen of both the new “read the New York Times on your laptop in starbucks” and the traditional “Financial calculator at US AID” development worlds. Also, as a product of the AOL instant messenger generation, I would be the first to admit that I am incredibly energized by the emergence of social business, high-tech hybrids. Slick web pages, the same nifty...

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Jan 21, 2009 SV El Salvador

My name is Sam Baker, and for the next several months I will be working with Kiva’s field partner Apoyo Integral in El Salvador. Having only been in-country for about a week and recently finished with an orientation of Integral’s microfinancial services, I thought I would take the time to highlight an especially unique feature of Apoyo Integral’s loan offerings in El Salvador: technical assistance in home building. Kiva community feedback coupled with longer fundraising times for home improvement and construction projects on the site suggests a slight hesitation...

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