Jul 15, 2016 TJ Tajikistan

It is the fifth and last Kiva borrower visit for the day. It is something that we, Kiva Field Fellows, do as part of our placement with microfinance institutions (MFI) around the world. A dusty and bumpy rural road brings us to the village where Habiba, a 52-years old school teacher, lives. A loan officer from one of Kiva’s three partner organisations in Tajikistan, Microcredit and Deposit Organisation Arvand, goes to the door to call for Habiba. A slender woman appears from inside the house and greets us in a soft voice with a kind smile on her lips. Russian happens to be my first language... Continue Reading >>


Jul 11, 2016 ID Indonesia

Tangerang is a large satellite city on the outskirts of Jakarta, Indonesia. It is a beautiful place - very green and lush, with several rivers winding through its many rural villages. I spent 3 weeks working with KSPPS BMI, one of Kiva’s microfinance partners that operates in the region.
A view overlooking the lush greenery of Tangerang
During my time there, I quickly realized that the river was the center of life for thousands of people in Tangerang. On several hour-long drives I would stare out the window and see... Continue Reading >>


Jul 4, 2016 MX Mexico

Sistema Biobolsa's Credit Coordinator, Irene, with Don Antonio, a proud owner of a biodigester (featured in the background). Click here to lend to farmers like Don Antonio.
On a Tuesday night one month ago I arrived in Mexico City, welcomed by a massive down pour (summer is the rainy season here). By that Thursday afternoon, I was attempting to define key metrics for a credit program in Spanish with one of Kiva’s field partners, a social enterprise called Sistema Biobolsa. My head reeled with new vocabulary words, and... Continue Reading >>


Jun 28, 2016 IN India

In the deep south of India there are two Kiva borrower groups that are the hot topic amongst villagers. After spending a part of my day with them, I have dubbed them the Spice Girls. Unlike Scary, Sporty, Baby, Ginger, and Posh Spice in the 1990s, Sindhu and Uma's groups are gaining notoriety in their respective villages not for their vocal talent but for their masala powder packet business.
Uma and Group- Amudha, Uma, Thara, Thangamani
Masala is the heart of Indian cuisine, it is a medley of grounded... Continue Reading >>


Jun 21, 2016 UG Uganda

The first partner that I worked with as part of my Kiva Fellowship was a small group called YICE (Youth Initiative for Community Engagement). They are headquartered in the village of Kyakatebe (Pronounced Jak-a-te-be) within the sub-county of Nalutuntu within the district of Mubende, Uganda. This village is located about 2 hours west of the capital, Kampala. YICE is a small partner that provides loans to groups of 5 women who are mutually accountable for repayment. They require no collateral to guarantee the loan and they are flexible with repayments based on farming / market conditions. Many... Continue Reading >>


Jun 20, 2016 ZW Zimbabwe

My MSG Combi Choir
Travelling down a bumpy gravel road in Guruve district I wasn’t sure if I had heard that quite right. “MSG is #1?” Yes, I definitely did hear that. The confirmation coming loud and clear as it was belted out repeatedly at full harmonious volume by a joyous choir of ten mothers and grandmothers dressed in their brightly coloured finest clothes and all packed into the back of a twenty passenger combi van, encouraged by the energetic and inspiring powerhouse that is my new friend Sinikiwe; Kiva... Continue Reading >>


Jun 17, 2016 ZW Zimbabwe

Cecilia used a part of her loan to buy seen and fertilizer for her farm and operate a tuck shop
Joyce supplies all the meat and produce from her own farm for the take away restaurant she opened with her second Kiva loan
Camfed supported women continuing their education to become teachers

My fellowship with Kiva began with a three month assignment to the Kiva...

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May 29, 2016 MG Madagascar

You may know that Kiva not only partners with Microfinance institutions, but also with schools, associations, and social enterprises. Given my keenness for learning about different social enterprise models, I was stoked to find out that as part of my Fellowship, I was tasked with finding leads for new potential Kiva partners in Madagascar. This gave me the chance to meet (dropping Kiva’s name in cold emails worked wonders!) and learn about organizations currently tackling environment conservation, health, sanitation and energy challenges across Madagascar. I was particularly wowed by two... Continue Reading >>


May 27, 2016 MG Madagascar

View of a surrounding village of Antsirabe, Madagascar
Madagascar is one of Kiva’s newest territory and I am the lucky first Fellow to ever work in the country and visit Vahatra, Kiva’s Field Partner in Antsirabe. Vahatra’s mission is to improve the living conditions of poor families living on less than two dollars a day by promoting and assisting with the development of their economic and social autonomy. Vahatra offers microfinance services and training, social assistance, and health insurance... Continue Reading >>


May 26, 2016 GO Global Update

The Kiva NYC Team went to Bed-Stuy Brooklyn to visit Abuela’s Tattoo and got inked for their Friday the 13th Sale!   Mandi and Sam took out a loan for Myrtle Tattoo Ink Parlor (renamed: Abuela’s Tattoo) at the beginning of last year. Soon after, they secured a space to provide local artists with supplies and a clean working environment. Though they were busy, we had a chance to learn more about their busy year of change, growth and success. Q: Since you applied for your Kiva loan, you've changed your shop name to...
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