ECLOF Kenya introduced climate-smart agriculture loan products in the year 2015 and the program has been doing well in the regions of Eastern Kenya ever since. In order to expand its program to other dairy farmers, Kiva and ECLOF Kenya are conducting an impact evaluation of the program. During my first week on data collection for the evaluation in Embu, I was amazed by the work that is involved in farming activities and the technology that can be used to improve production. Embu is in the Eastern Region of Kenya, and below you can see a view of some of the farming areas in Embu. These... Continue Reading >>
After the breakup of the Soviet Union, the new republics had varying degrees of success in adapting to the introduction of capitalism. Tajikistan struggled more than most, compounded by the fact that it suffered a five-year civil war soon after declaring independence. By 1997, a half-million people had fled the country to avoid persecution and poverty. Many ended up in Russia, and the exodus continues to this day. Although the country is stable now, every year hundreds of thousands of Tajiks work abroad in Russia and other countries as opportunities in Tajikistan are limited. Over a... Continue Reading >>
Susan Jeannette Fernandez Chavez is a 29 year-old Kiva borrower and artisan whose crafts leave a profound impact on her community. I sat down with her to discuss her journey to the arts, her passion for child development, and the importance of supporting artists. Check out her crafts here. And yes, she ships internationally! Me: When did you figure out that you wanted to make art? Susan: I wanted to create something that was mine, that had my name. At the time I was... Continue Reading >>
I arrived in Managua on a Saturday night on the 29th of July - my first time in Nicaragua and in Central America. As I was gearing up the next day to start my first week of work with MiCredito, I discovered by chance that Tuesday the 1st of August was a bank holiday in Managua – a festival for the celebration of Saint Domingo, the city’s unofficial patron. I also discovered that the same celebration would be repeated after just 10 days to deliver the Saint back to the church where it was taken from on the first day of the celebration, with a similar ceremony. As surprised as I was, I quickly... Continue Reading >>
On a hot and humid Santa Maria afternoon, it seemed only fitting to visit Domingo, who is an ice cream maker in the Philippines. We left the van on the road and walked down the dirt path, navigating mud puddles enroute to his neighborhood. Along the way, there was colorful laundry hanging on fences, neighbors washing up and kids playing while curiously watching us.
We arrived at Domingo’s home, where a large group of his family waited for us...Continue Reading >>
Drive about 1.5 hours east of the up-and-coming metropolis of Medellín, and you’ll find yourself on tranquil mountain roads in Cocorná, dotted with family farms and handmade houses. Keep your eyes peeled, because Tienda de Paz San Jose doesn’t look like much at first glance. It’s a one-story brick building perched on a hill, seemingly indistinguishable from countless other roadside pit stops in the area. However, inside this unremarkable structure lives the beating heart of a community that has been displaced from their homes by violence three times. Their reaction? To invest in themselves... Continue Reading >>
I have been in Costa Rica for two weeks and so far I’ve been to a wedding, a baptism, and a birthday party.
Taiwan may be the newly crowned World’s Friendliest Country, but I’d say that Costa Rica gives it some heavy competition.
I had heard something of Tico hospitality before arriving, but I had brushed it off as one of those things that every culture lays...Continue Reading >>
I had the privilege of being Kiva’s first fellow to work with Together Association for Development and Environment (TADE), our only partner in Egypt. TADE is based in the Minya governate, known locally as the “Bride of Upper Egypt.”Before arriving, all I knew about Minya came from headlines of vicious extremist attacks targeting Christian communities. I was relieved to find an oasis of harmony, where the community ties... Continue Reading >>