Stories tagged with Kiva Field Partners

Jan 1, 2011 BJ Benin

By Frederic Billou, KF13, Benin

As a Kiva Fellow working with ALIDe, Kiva’s partner in Benin, I spend  a lot of time visiting Kiva borrowers. After almost 3 months in the field, here is a quick snapshot of 3 borrowers, each with a slightly different reason to smile…

First, here is a current Kiva borrower who came to an ALDe branch to make a repayment and then very proudly flashed a brand new national ID card. These cards are very difficult to obtain here and require a ton of paperwork that is often difficult to get (for example,...

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Jan 1, 2011 MN Mongolia

A Kiva Coordinator is someone who organizes and manages the Kiva program at one of Kiva’s field partners. Watch the video to find out what a Kiva Coordinator does everyday, their favorite aspects of working with Kiva, and also the challenges of being a Kiva Coordinator. As a Roaming Fellow, I had the opportunity to interview three Mongolian field partners – XacBank, Credit Mongol, and Transcapital....

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Jan 1, 2011 BJ Benin

By Frederic Billou, KF13, Benin

The “last mile” is one of the most discussed topics when debating microfinance:  No matter how optimized and efficient a microfinance institution may be,  developing countries are still very much cash-based  and loan officers have to cover the “last mile” to physically reach borrowers , disburse funds, collect repayments and build and maintain a close relationship over time. As such, this “last mile” is one of the largest expenses for many microfinance institutions reaching rural borrowers.


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Dec 12, 2010 PH Philippines

In our first week as Kiva trainees we were taught that microloans are not intended for the very poorest of the poor. Microfinance institutions target the unbankable poor, those who can benefit from a loan for an income-generating activity. There is another level of poverty below that, those who need emergency help for basic human needs. Many MFIs develop alternative services for this segment of the population. At...

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Dec 12, 2010 DO Dominican Republic

By Nick Hamilton, KF13

Before beginning my placement as a Kiva Fellow, I tended to view the Kiva model simply in terms of members lending to borrowers and borrowers paying back. It was hard to envisage the intricacies of an Field Partner’s (or MFI) operations and what goes into facilitating a loan. In my eyes the MFI was the middle man; an amorphous mass that made things happen. Of course, the simple fact is that without MFIs Kiva would not exist. They share an equal responsibility with the lenders and the borrowers in ensuring that Kiva’s mission – ‘to...

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Nov 11, 2010 AZ Azerbaijan

Gamarjoba! (“Hello!” in Georgian)

I’m currently in Tbilisi, Georgia renewing my Azerbaijani visa and traveling a bit around the region. Hence the “gamarjoba” instead of what’s becoming a regular “salamu alaykum”.

During training for the Kiva Fellowship I heard it mentioned numerous times that taxi drivers in Central Asia (but specifically in Azerbaijan) were the least demanded loans on Kiva. Their loans took the longest to get funded and expired most often. I was not surprised. After all, “Transportation”, being at the end of the Sector list on Kiva also competes...

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Nov 11, 2010 PH Philippines

Today, in the wee hours of the morning, American shoppers queued up outside their favorite stores, waiting anxiously to get the holiday season’s best deals. As Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving, marks the beginning of the holiday shopping season in the USA, and is one of the most highly-trafficked days of the year for U.S. malls….I also found myself at the mall this Friday…though this mall was in the Philippines.

Clients' products on display at the store NWTF has set up...

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Nov 11, 2010 RW Rwanda

“Someone told me she loves me, just then…she told me that she loves me and I am so happy.” When an overjoyed stranger took his mobile from his ear and turned to find the first person to share his wonderful news with…there I was.  Someone loved him and he had to let it out to the world.  I gave him my congratulations, shook his hand and landed an encouraging pat on his back.  He was beaming.  So was I.

Aaah Rwanda!  Only two weeks in and every day has been a revelation.

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Nov 11, 2010 DO Dominican Republic

When Kiva asked whether I’d consider a Fellowship in the Dominican Republic, my first instinct was to head to Google. I’d never been to the Caribbean and knew very little about this small country. After my initial search, Google asked whether I’d like to view some images of the DR and lured me in with 4 or 5 thumbnails. Each contained something that doesn’t exist in my country (the UK): the sun. I don’t think I got past the first page of pictures. I sat there mesmerized by contiguous images of palm trees, white sand and idyllic emerald sea and sent my response to Kiva: “Yes!”


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Oct 10, 2010 CR Costa Rica

By Gabriel Francis, Kiva Fellow class 12 in Costa Rica

When asked what they think of Costa Rica most people usually refer to the poster in their local travel agency, white palm beaches, virgin cloud forests, and toucans. Yet, there is a side of Costa Rica that the tour packages pouring out of San Jose regrettably fail to recount. The truth is, while eco-tourism and liberal trade agreements have brought prosperity to some in Costa Rica, many Ticos still live below the poverty line.

Is ignorance bliss? We Kiva Lenders know better.

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