May 02, 2011
Shannon Maynard is the Director of Bankers without Borders, Grameen Foundation's skills-based volunteer program.
Today, Bankers without Borders (BwB) has joined with the Association for Enterprise Opportunity (AEO) to announce a new collaboration to support microfinance and microenterprise development organizations in the United States. This alliance will enable more than 400 organizations to benefit from the skills and experience of our more than 6,300 highly skilled active and retired business professionals in BwB’s global volunteer reserve corps.
We are currently recruiting for our first project to support AEO and its members. BwB is seeking a team of volunteers to refine and develop a toolkit that will enable microfinance and microenterprise organizations to better meet the needs of their existing clients and reach individuals presently not served. For more details or to apply, please visit the Bankers without Borders website.
Once the toolkit is developed and piloted, we anticipate opportunities for other volunteers to work with microenterprise organizations to conduct a market assessment using the framework designed through this first volunteer project.
In conjunction with today’s announcement, AEO released a report on the state of the microenterprise sector in the United States. The report, “The Power of One in Three,” frames the powerful role that the microenterprise sector can play in helping the American economy recover and create jobs. As suggested by the study’s title, the findings demonstrate that if one in three microenterprises hired just one employee, the U.S. economy could reach full employment. For more information on AEO, please visit www.aeoworks.org.
We believe BwB’s volunteers are some of the best and brightest minds in the corporate sector. For those of you who are U.S. residents, this partnership presents a unique opportunity to help make a difference, both locally and globally. Stay tuned as we keep you informed of opportunities to engage through this new alliance.