The diverse Asia region is undergoing major transitions economically, politically, socially, and culturally. Despite incredible economic progress over the past two decades, Asia remains home to the majority of the world’s poor people.
- Nearly two-thirds of people, close to 627 million people, in China live under the international poverty line.
- Seventy-seven percent of rural Indonesians are poor.
- Fifty-six percent of households in the Philippines live under the international poverty line.
- More than 40 percent of people in South Asia live on less than $1.25/day, compared to more than 50 percent in Sub-Saharan Africa.
- Almost 90 percent of people living in rural India fall under the international poverty line.
- Over three-fourths of Pakistanis, more than 118 million people, are poor.
While Asia, especially India and China, has experienced economic advancement, over 2.2 billion people, living on just $2.50/day or less, still remain in poverty.
Grameen Foundation focuses on five core countries in Asia where we have been providing support for many years: China, India, Indonesia, Pakistan, and the Philippines. Together, these countries are home to more than 60 percent of the world’s poor people, living on just $2.50/day, and more than 70 percent of the world’s poorest people, living on just $1.25/day. We support initiatives that start with the poorest and move up, rather than the reverse, using microfinance and technology as powerful weapons against poverty. Both weapons create business opportunities for the poor and the poorest by opening access to vital information and resources.
We combine our knowledge, experience, and resources with that of local organizations and other dedicated corporate, academics, volunteers and other stakeholders to identify the communities that will benefit most from our presence. Grameen Foundation currently has more than 30 individuals supporting its work in Asia. We have an office in the Philippines and are in the process of establishing offices in Hong Kong and Indonesia. Hong Kong will serve as our regional hub. Click here to contact our offices.
Listening and Learning from the Poor
Our strong presence on the ground in Asia allows us to listen and learn from the poor and the people who serve them. This way, we can work most effectively to ensure that poor families have access to microfinance and technology and, as a result of access to these services, move themselves out of poverty.
Grameen Foundation joins forces with local organizations to provide products and services that allow them to: 1) reach deeper to provide microfinance and technology services and make even more of an impact in the communities we serve; 2) empower the poorest people who may not be ready for traditional microfinance or technology programs; 3) provide access to microfinance and technology services among the poor and poorest in harder-to-reach areas and currently unserved/underserved areas; and 4) measure which individuals are being reached to ensure they are moving out of poverty over time.
A Path out of Poverty
When the tsunami ravaged Aceh’s shores on December 26, 2004, Ibu Erlina lost both her parents, her parents’ home, and all of her family’s possessions. With no money, Erlina moved her husband and one-and-a-half year old daughter to temporary barracks. Her husband worked in the construction industry, and Erlina ran a small kiosk selling snacks and sundries on the land her parents owned. However, she struggled to make a profit because she lacked the capital to adequately stock the kiosk. Read More >