Microfinance in the field

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  1. Searching for women’s economic empowerment

    March 6, 2015 - by Blanca Méndez - 1 comment


    Women’s empowerment comes in many different forms.  As orchestrated efforts are required to make significant advances in women’s empowerment, it would also not be fair to attribute women’s empowerment entirely to one sector or development initiative. Take microfinance, for instance. Microfinance’s impact on women’s empowerment is often measured by the number of female borrowers. This form of measurement does not take into account other contributing factors such as decision making power, access to resources and self-determination. A microfinance loan alone cannot determine whether or not a woman is empowered, however access to microfinance “has been seen as contributing not only to poverty reduction and financial sustainability, but also to a series of ‘virtuous spirals’ of economic empowerment, increased well-being and social and political empowerment for women themselves, thereby addressing goals of gender equality and empowerment”*.

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  2. A colony of hope

    February 17, 2015 - by Blanca Méndez - 0 comments


    The Shanyidan Colony is located in the surroundings of Khurda. The less colourful area is a clear contrast with the other villages, but respectively for a reason:  this colony is the home of 35 families with members that were affected by leprosy.

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  3. Together we are stronger

    February 16, 2015 - by Blanca Méndez - 0 comments


    We started the field trips with a visit to Maanaveeya’s partner, Annapurna Microfinance Pvt. Ltd (AMPL). Its Balipatna branch is about 45 minutes away from the hotel. The road is filled with school girls on bikes, motorcycles, cars and people walking trying to reach school or work as fast as possible.

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  4. Ready to start

    February 15, 2015 - by Blanca Méndez - 0 comments


    The introductory meeting will be the first time all participants come together. This time, the group was composed of 12 people from Austria, France, Germany, Switzerland and the Netherlands. 

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  5. Once upon a time…

    February 13, 2015 - by Blanca Méndez - 0 comments

    A week ago, I was able to get in contact with Vellore CMC to arrange a visit to Oikocredit’s first partner, Vellore Christian Medical College. It was around 7 am when I left for an almost 3 hour drive to connect with our partners at Vellore.

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  6. Think global, act local

    February 12, 2015 - by Blanca Méndez - 0 comments

    open eyes.JPG

    One of the main features of Oikocredit is to have a network of  regional and country offices worldwide. In India, Oikocredit works through its subsidiary Maanaveeya Development & Finance Private Limited (Maanaveeya) that acts as a regional office with area managers to cover this enormous country. 

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  7. Passage to India

    February 11, 2015 - by Blanca Méndez - 0 comments


    A warm breeze with a subtle scent of jasmine makes me realize I’m back in India – Hyderabad to be exact. This is the first time I’ve been to Asia for an Oikocredit study tour and I’m very much looking forward to meeting our staff and partners here.

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  8. Let’s talk about climate change

    September 22, 2014 - by David Woods - 1 comment

    Barefoot Power

    This week from 22-28 September, the city of New York will be host to around 100 events, activities and meetings in support of the UN’s high profile Climate Summit. Some of the world’s most powerful and influential people will attend the summit, including US President Barack Obama, Peruvian President Ollanta Humala, UK Prime Minister David Cameron as well as former Irish President, Mary Robinson.

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  9. Would you finance mangoes from Peru?

    June 25, 2014 - by Leonard Sprik - 1 comment

    Releasing cables from the roof of the bus

    During the Annual General Meeting in Piura, Peru I was able to visit one of our potential partners in the region: the ‘Asociacion de Productores Agropecuarios de la Zona de Hualtaco del Valle de San Lorenzo’, APAGRO in short.

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  10. Monitoring the sustainability of our support to Kuapa Kokoo

    June 17, 2014 - by Ging Ledesma - 0 comments


    The jolt of the wheels hitting tarmac brought me out of my nap. “Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to Kumasi. The temperature outside is 24 deg. C”.  My first day visiting partners in Ghana was underway.  We were up at 5:30 this morning to catch an early flight to Kumasi, Ghana’s second largest city which is about 270 km away from the capital, Accra.

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