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Microfinance in the field

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  1. A successful due diligence in Sucre

    August 22, 2017 - by Annabelle Coulombier - 0 comments

    Sucre La Recoleta.png

    I arrived in La Paz, Bolivia, at the beginning of April to start my two month work exchange with our Bolivian and Uruguayan office. Not only is the La Paz breath-taking because of the beautiful surrounding mountains, but also because it is the highest capital in the world. 

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  2. We’ll keep in touch

    June 6, 2014 - by Blanca Méndez - 0 comments

    Study tour participants

    I usually feel a mix of emotions on the last day of a study tour and Bolivia was no exception. On the one hand, I was glad that the study tour had been successfully completed and that everybody was very happy about the experience. On the other hand, it was sad to say our good-byes and see everyone leave.

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  3. Important reflections

    June 6, 2014 - by Blanca Méndez - 0 comments

    Presentations in closing session

    The study tour drew to a close with all three groups presenting their findings and relating their experiences in the closing session.

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  4. Long-standing relationships

    June 6, 2014 - by Blanca Méndez - 0 comments

    Betty Sebacollo (Photo Alfredo Zeballos)

    After visiting Banco FIE’s headquarters, I met three of its end-clients in La Paz: Pablo Cordero and Betty Sebacollo (close to San Pedro) and Yolanda Mita in the Los Andes area.

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  5. A special person for a special job

    June 3, 2014 - by Ulrich Leutbecher - 0 comments

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    Julio Alem Rojo is director of special projects at Centro de Investigacion y Desarollo Regional (CIDRE), the first partner organization we visited in the Cochabamba region. On the bus trip to Colomi (3200 m) we discovered a few things that we had in common: we both studied chemistry, we both used to live near Basel in Switzerland and we both worked in the pharmaceutical industry.

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  6. A microfinance bank with a social mission

    May 23, 2014 - by Blanca Méndez - 0 comments

    Banco Fie branch in San Pedro (Photo: Alfredo Zeballos)

    Banco FIE is one of Oikocredit’s equity MFI partners with íts headquarters in San Pedro, a neighbourhood of downtown La Paz. Established in 1985 as an NGO, today Banco FIE operates as a bank, which means that it can receive deposits. This has contributed to it being able to lower its interest rates. The NGO still exists to ensure that Banco Fie does not suffer from mission drift and continues to support micro, small and medium entrepreneurs.

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  7. Follow your dreams

    May 23, 2014 - by Blanca Méndez - 0 comments

    Khanaura group with leading singer Leonardo Torres (Photo: Alfredo Zeballos)

    I was surprised to hear from loan officer Carlos Ortiz that Leonardo Torres, who I had met six years ago, was no longer a client of Banco FIE.  Despite this, Carlos arranged a meeting at Leonardo’s new place for my colleague Matthias Lehnert and I.

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  8. Apthapi: an Andean picnic

    May 22, 2014 - by Blanca Méndez - 0 comments

    A group picture before sharing an aphathi (Photo: Alfredo Zeballos)

    A few kilometres from Huaringa is the Chua Visalaya canton. In a corner of the main square, a group of eight women and two men are collecting the money for their monthly instalment to pay the BOB 68,000 group loan (€ 7,425.70). Alberta Mamani (president) and Pacesa Paucara (treasurer) call each member in turn. After counting the bills, they confirm the amount to Carla Albelo, Crecer loan’s officer. 

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  9. Please say it again?

    May 22, 2014 - by Blanca Méndez - 0 comments

    Training session of a village bank

    After a two-hour journey I arrived in Huarina town, close to Lake Titicaca. It has its own health centre. Today is a special day because today the Jornada de Salud (health day) takes place, organized by Oikocredit partner CRECER.

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  10. The first snow

    May 22, 2014 - by Blanca Méndez - 0 comments

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    Winter is the dry season in Bolivia. In spite of this, it has been raining constantly. The Andean area has seen rain and thunder in La Paz, and snow in El Alto.

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