Posts tagged ‘International Development’

Update from the Field: Borrower Feedback on Innovative Products, Sounds from the Field,

Compiled by David Gorgani | KF17 + KF18 | Guatemala

Through motivating stories, informative videos, intriguing sound bytes and interesting first-hand accounts, this week’s update is quite the smorgasbord of stories from the field. Through accounts of first business loans and stories about successful community banks, Fellows in Georgia and Peru show us the effects of our loans; through sights, sounds and narratives, Fellows in Guatemala and New Orleans (among others) show us – and let us hear – bits of their daily lives; and through detailed accounts of interactions with field partners, Fellows in Burkina Faso, Uganda and Bolivia show us the great work Kiva’s collaborators are performing on the ground.

Continue Reading 13 August 2012 at 09:00 2 comments

An Ode to the Chicken Bus

David Gorgani | KF17 + KF18 | Guatemala

Aptly-named for the high number of chickens that utilize its services, whether in a cage, with a string tied around their legs or simply held tightly by their caretakers, chicken buses (camionetas) are the primary form of inter-city transport throughout Central America. While those of you who have spent time traveling in Central America know exactly what I’m talking about, now would be a good opportunity for the rest of you to prepare yourselves to be blown away.

Continue Reading 8 August 2012 at 08:00 6 comments

Update from the Field: Kiva Products New and Old, Lender-Borrower Connections, and a Nice Glass of Cold Milk

Compiled by David Gorgani | KF17 + KF18 | Guatemala

This week’s update from the field covers a number of Fellows’ experiences as they work on adapting their MFIs’ innovative products to Kiva lenders, as they continue to develop Kiva’s newest and most innovative initiatives, and as they continue to visit borrowers – in this case borrowers whose loans they themselves financed! Whether old school or new school, Kiva products continue to focus on providing a connection between you and the borrowers whose loans you’ve financed. This week’s posts help us to understand the new ways (and the old) in which this connection can be developed and appreciated.

Continue Reading 30 July 2012 at 09:00 3 comments

Why Kiva’s Original Product is Still my Favorite

David Gorgani | KF17 + KF18 | Guatemala

Continue Reading 26 July 2012 at 08:00 7 comments

Update from the Field: Innovation, Vibrant Cities and Stories and Lessons from Borrowers

Compiled by David Gorgani | KF17 + KF18 | Guatemala

It’s official – the Fellows have taken to the field! This week’s update touches on many different Fellows’ experiences visiting Kiva borrowers in the field and traces the similarities and differences we face in our borrower visits, all with a strong undertone of inspiration. Let’s face it folks, this is why we chose to volunteer 3+ months of our time for the Fellowship – to talk to the very people that you read about on Kiva.org. However, it is also clear through posts that cover other topics that a Kiva Fellowship is a much more diverse package than simply meeting Kiva borrowers; it comes with a number of side effects that include living in vibrant locations, jumping to the forefront of the field of microfinance, meeting inspirational people on our off time, and many more. As always, expect to learn some new things from this week’s stories from the field.

Continue Reading 16 July 2012 at 09:00 5 comments

Nairobi – Where Development, Social Enterprise and Kiva come to Party

By Patrick Seeton | KF18 | Kenya

I’ve been in Nairobi for just over two weeks (and more importantly three weekends!) and what has struck me most, beyond the friendliness of the people and the ever-present dust and diesel fumes, is the social scene and its social enterprise scenesters.

Kenya has undergone a transformation in recent years – the removal of long time president Daniel Moi in 2002 and subsequent democratic election of current president Mwai Kibaki was the start in a chain of events that has led to a resurgence in Kenya’s standing in the region.

Kenyan President Mwai Kibaki’s inauguration, Uhuru Park, Nairobi, 2002 (Looks like it was a pretty good party)

Recent Fellows’ blogs about Kenyans’ sense of hope (see Muskan’s “Trough” Blog) and the region’s innate entrepreneurial spirit (see Julie’s “How to Make it” Blog) demonstrate how these attributes, combined with political freedom and technological advances, have made Nairobi an emergent hub for development agencies and fledgling social enterprises alike.

These development professionals, social entrepreneurs and Kiva are all here Nairobi trying to figure out what the region’s future could look like…

(more…)

12 July 2012 at 07:00 6 comments

A Mexican Tale of Women and Sheep

Emmanuel M. von Arx | KF 16+17 | Mexico

Who would have thought that my second Kiva Fellowship would teach me just as much about microfinance as about the rearing of sheep? Seriously, ask me anything you want: How do you best hold a lamb? How do you wrestle with a grown-up mutton? How do you treat sheep for worms? Where and how often do you set them a vaccine? How do you determine a sheep’s age? Why does a sheep bite normally neither hurt nor bleed? For what reason does a sheep have four stomach compartments? And how do you compel a lamb’s reluctant mother to accept her kid after birth? I owe this knowledge to UNAM-educated veterinarian Linda Velázquez Rosas, who made a sheep-expert not just out of me, but also out of 200 amateur sheep-owners in and around the little town of San Felipe del Progreso, two hours west of Mexico City. This training was made possible by Vision Fund Mexico (also known as Fundación Realidad or FRAC), a Kiva field partner that excels both at financial and non-financial services (in a previous blog post I documented an artisan fair in Mexico City that was co-organized by FRAC).

Continue Reading 6 July 2012 at 08:00 6 comments

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