Stories tagged with Lebanon

Jun 6, 2017 LB Lebanon

Visiting Borrowers in Biet Ed-Deen, Lebanon

When I told my friends and family that I was leaving my job in Washington D.C. to move to Lebanon as a Kiva Fellow, I got the same reaction from everyone: is it safe? Isn’t that near Syria? What's there? 

Very few Americans know about Lebanon, and even those who do only know it through the lens of the media: images of war-torn buildings and a refugee crisis too big to handle. So, I will do my best to shed light on my experiences here in hopes that I can tell a story about Lebanon that isn’t told often... Continue Reading >>
Aug 8, 2011 LB Lebanon

By Heba Gamal - KF15, Lebanon

It is not hard for a Lebanese to detect my disguised Egyptian Arabic accent, so it’s been quite common for me to be asked how long I have been in Lebanon, whether this is my first time, and of course what I’m doing here in Lebanon every time I meet someone. Most recently this happened to me at a local Resto-Pub in Hasbaya after a 10km hike. The Resto-Pub owner, Fayez, and I quickly got to talking and as usual it wasn’t long before I was aked ”What do you do here in Lebanon?” Although, I’m fluent in Arabic...

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Jul 7, 2011 CL Chile

Compiled by Kate Bennett, KF15, Ecuador

Kiva borrower Jóse in his store in the Lo Espejo neighborhood of Santiago, Chile

Microfinance is about change- positive change for borrowers, their local economies, and the future of the developing world. This week our Fellows share stories of change across the globe: a brighter outcome for the children of Kiva borrowers in Sierra Leone; transformed businesses and...

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Jul 7, 2011 LB Lebanon

By Heba Gamal - KF15, Lebanon

I had been living in my beautifully spacious room with an extra bed to host visitors for about a month when the landlord informed me that I will have to move to the smallest room in the house because a big group of performers and artists are coming and they had booked all the big rooms in the house in advance. I was really not looking forward to leaving the room; I had made it my own, put pictures and postcards up, friends had come and stayed with me in it, but most importantly I had no idea how I was going to fit all my belongings that now...

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Jun 6, 2011 LB Lebanon

By Heba Gamal - KF15, Lebanon

“It is when you give of yourself that you truly give.” – Gibran Khalil Gibran, The Prophet

Having grown up in Egypt, I know that family is an important part of daily life in the Middle East. So, when it came to my Kiva Fellowship – I knew that in Lebanon I was going to be well-fed, watched over and taken care of. What I didn’t know is how this family-style love I was too familiar with was going to translate into the workings of micro-finance in Lebanon.

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Jan 1, 2011 LB Lebanon

As I write the future of Lebanon and the region is uncertain and unstable.  The political parties are currently meeting to try to decide the next prime minister and ultimately the fate of a country which has seen more than its fair share of conflict.

 Nearly two weeks ago all Hezbollah ministers  withdrew from the cabinet, resulting in the collapse of the fragile government which had struggled to make progress in the eighteen months it had existed.  Last Monday the UN Special Tribunal for Lebanon(STL) announced that it had passed indictments for the assassination of Prime Minister...

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Dec 12, 2010 IQ Iraq

It may come as a surprise to many that Christmas is even acknowledged in Lebanon never mind celebrated, but as I write there is a Christmas tree in the office hallway and we are organising the secret santa.

Office Christmas Tree

Over the past couple of days the whole of Beirut has been transformed into a festive wonderland, with sparkling lights adorning trees, shops and anything close enough to an electrical socket. Given the fact that Lebanon is in the Middle East...

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Dec 12, 2010 LB Lebanon

I am now beginning the second month of my Kiva fellowship with Al Majmoua – Lebanese Association for Development, one of Kiva’s partner Microfinance Institutions (MFIs), in Beirut, Lebanon.

Last Friday, the 26th November, I was lucky enough to spend the morning with Georgette, one of Al Majmoua’s loan agents based in their Nwayri office, in Beirut.

Georgette had very kindly made time to take me around to see some of her clients, for whom I wanted to write journal updates (the short emails letting lenders know how the people they’ve loaned to are getting along, particularly in...

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Nov 11, 2010 LB Lebanon

I’m just starting my 3rd week as a Kiva Fellow with Al Majmoua, one of Kiva’s partner MFIs (Micro Finance Institute) in Beirut, Lebanon.

This morning (15th November 2010) I sat down at my desk and discovered that a loan request for $1000, that I had posted onto Kiva’s website last Friday, had gone live & been fully funded over the weekend – by just 2 funders!

public sculpture - Beirut

I cannot help but feel a little lighter in my seat with a big...

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Nov 11, 2010 IQ Iraq

Phoenix From The Rubble

My heart fell when I opened up the e mail, ‘Congratulations…….. you’re going to Beirut’.  I hold my hands up, my first thought was warzone.  A quick scan of the UK Foreign Office website confirmed my fears, general risk of terrorism, violent clashes in previous months, not somewhere I was in a hurry to leave the UK for.  Fortunately I didn’t...

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