This is not volunteerism for the sake of volunteerism, but rather a new business model for solving some of the real problems impeding the scale, sustainability, and impact of microfinance and T4D initiatives. A greater and more strategic use of volunteers can help the field to realize, more rapidly, strategic and operational improvements.
In Measuring the Impact of Microfinance: Taking Another Look, Odell examines studies which have demonstrated that microfinance helps poor people better cope with financial shocks that often upend their lives. It also addresses the difficulties in isolating microfinance’s impact from the myriad forces at play in poor people’s lives.
Rajkumari lives in northern India in a small mud-thatched hut with her husband, four children, two daughters-in-law and grandchildren. She provides for her family by weaving thread. Rajkumari had wanted to put her very small savings aside for future expenses, but without a savings account, she often spent it instead.
About two years ago, Apoy made a mistake that is still benefiting him today. He misdialed a cell phone number and found himself talking to Sariyani. Even though the phone number was wrong, the conversation apparently felt right, because the couple decided to meet, began dating and eventually got married.
Sudha lives with her husband and four children in Uttar Pradesh, a region of northern India where steady jobs are hard to find. Without a regular income, her family struggled to meet their daily needs.
This started to change when Sudha took a loan of 10,000 rupees (about $225) from Cashpor, a microfinance provider with which Grameen Foundation works, to purchase a buffalo. Sudha used the milk from the buffalo in her small tea stand near her home. In just six months, she generated enough income to not only feed her family, but also to keep her daughter in school.
Grameen Foundation's Growth Guarantees program was launched in 2005 to increase microfinance clients’ access to loans by guaranteeing local funding for the microfinance institutions (MFIs) that serve them.
Working in several Asian countries, we are finding new ways to connect poor communities, particularly women, to a range of financial services.
June 08, 2013
After the Miami Heat won the 2012 NBA Championship, a Twitter exchange erupted between Mark Cuban, the outspoken owner of the Dallas Mavericks; and Skip Bayless, sports journalist, TV personality and ESPN commentator.
May 31, 2013
The following post was created from a new case study written by researchers at Grameen Foundation India and edited by Kimberly Davies. Cross-posted from NextBillion.net
Ibu Marni, who lives on the outskirts of Jakarta in Indonesia, struggled for years to make ends meet and provide for herself and her two children. She had tried to start a few small businesses of her own, but they had all failed. Ibu Marni clearly had an entrepreneurial drive, but poverty had put obstacles in her way that kept her from reaching her potential.
Recognizing that Ibu Marni was a poor but budding entrepreneur, Grameen Foundation’s partner Ruma, a local social enterprise, recruited her to start her own small business. All that was required was a simple mobile phone.