Compiled by Alexis Ditkowsky, KF14, South Africa
The Fellows will be covering International Women’s Day later this week but let’s take a moment to acknowledge its lesser-known cousin in Kyrgyzstan, “Man’s Day”. And while you’re appreciating culture and history in far-off places, take a trip to Peru and West Timor through photos, visit borrowers in Uganda and Rwanda through video, learn a little something about communicating in South Africa, and catch up on the latest from Liberia, Ghana, and Mexico (home to the “Singing Fellow”).
What does Lima look like?
Country: Peru / Fellow: Noreen Giga (KF14)
Find out why Lima is nicknamed “El Pulpo” (“The Octopus”) and learn about an unusual local business: transporting a washing machine around the neighborhood and renting it by the hour.
The Meaning of “Now” in South Africa
Country: South Africa / Fellow: Alexis Ditkowsky (KF14)
“Just now” and “now” are much fuzzier concepts than a type-A American was prepared for. Plus pick up a few more South African-isms in the post and in the comments.
Knowing and Understanding, Saber y Entender
Country: Liberia / Fellow: Carlos Cruz Montano (KF14)
Carlos explores some of the barriers to understanding between borrowers and microfinance institutions (MFIs) through examples from Liberia, Paraguay, and Guatemala.
The Rookie (El Novato)
Country: Mexico / Fellow: John Farmer (KF14)
The most important thing you need to know about this post is that there’s a video of John singing his own song about microfinance, a highlight from his 45 hours of loan officer training.
Video Blog: The Kiva Story
Country: Uganda / Fellow: Nila Uthayakumar (KF14)
This week, Nila introduces us Adella, Deborah, and Florence, three borrowers who discuss their loans, their businesses, and how they’ve used their profits.
Video Blog: Francoise, A Kiva Borrower’s Story
Country: Rwanda / Fellow: Adam Cohn (KF14)
Bright colors, catchy music, and the story of Francoise, a smiling borrower who started with a $25 World Relief grant and is now her family’s breadwinner.
Country: Ghana / Fellow: Mei-Ing Cheok (KF14)
Mei-Ing gives a detailed overview of the fishing industry in Ghana and how recent government regulations are impacting lending decisions at her microfinance institution.
Huh, There’s a West Timor?
Country: Indonesia / Fellow: Lisa Skowron (KF14)
In case you weren’t familiar with West Timor, Lisa shares a gorgeous slideshow from her first month plus some startling statistics about Indonesia’s poorest province.
Ensuring a manly man’s day
Country: Kyrgyzstan / Fellow: Charlie Wood (KF14)
Kiva Fellows learn about and participate in a wide range of local holidays. Charlie appropriately celebrates Man’s Day in Kyrgyzstan with a trip to an entrepreneurial eagle hunter.
The next generation of microentrepreneurs
Country: Peru / Fellow: Geeta Uhl (KF14)
Jumping off of last week’s post “Kiva Field Partners: More than just microfinance“, Geeta describes how her partner offers classes and activities for children of borrowers.
Five things you may not know about Rwanda
Country: Rwanda / Fellow: Michelle Curtis (KF13)
Before saying goodbye to Rwanda, Michelle shares some of the important things she’s learned, including how to count with her fingers. (FYI, five is a fist and seven is a fist with two fingers poking over the top like rabbit ears.)
Plus more pictures from this past week: