Anna Cleal, KF13, Uganda

Mindblank! Recently I have been at a loss for words, and haven’t felt so compelled to share anything on the blog. Instead I decided to focus my efforts on producing a video of my time in the field as a Kiva fellow. One of the most amazing parts of being a Kiva fellow is the beautiful meetings you have with microfinance clients. In these sessions you have the opportunity to chat with borrowers about anything and everything. At the end of an interview we all commonly ask borrowers what are their hopes and dreams for the future.

This video compiles footage of 6 months as a kiva fellow in the Philippines and Uganda, interviewing over 50 microfinance clients. Each business was different, but the purpose of these businesses were often the same. All of these clients were happy that with their loan, and increased business profits, they could send their children to school, to support their family, and to improve their living.  To many this is a massive acheivement.

In this way microfinance is not only empowering individuals from the developing world, but also giving their children the opportunity to dream, and to think big. I believe the real benefits of microfinance will be seen in future generations of children who were educated from the proceeds of these microloans.

The microfinance industry is often under scrutiny, and the economics have a way of turning a seemingly simple concept into a complex one. I believe beneath this scrutiny and apparent complexity it is important to remember the heart of microfinance. Why it happens. Why the need for capital started in the first place. Why people aspire to improve their business. Beneath interest rates, repayments, foreign exchange fluctuations, microfinance institutes, and so on, the heart of the matter is this…..

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Anna Cleal, KF13 has recently completed her final fellowship in Uganda.  She loved every minute of her time in the field especially the opportunity to meet and work with such amazing people in both the Philippines and Uganda.  After 6 months in the field she remains an avid Kiva supporter and will continue to lend to the organisation.


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