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Inlägg för C9271 Abafiturukundo Group (15e oktober 2012)

Samuel has paid back the loan in full and would like to give you an update of his fruits&vegetables business.

Samuel says that the loan helped the business a lot. With the profits, Samuel was able to renovate his house and to pay medical insurance for his family.

Samuel 's hope for the success of his business has grown. In the future, he would like to become financial stable.

Samuel would like to thank the Kiva lenders.

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Inlägg för Maria Luisa (25e september 2012)

Dear Kiva lender,

Here is an update from Nicaragua where I am working as a Kiva Fellow. Last week, I visited Maria Luisa in her house in Granada. Maria Luisa is running her own entertainment business: she rents out speakers, disco lights and stages.

Granada is a beautiful colonial city in Nicaragua, full of colorful houses with large inner courtyards where rocking chairs and hammocks are the main pieces of furniture. It is the most expensive city in Nicaragua. Lots of foreigners have settled here or pass through as a tourist, resulting in higher prices for basic necessities such as food and housing.
It is against this backdrop that I visit Maria Luisa in her small 2-room house where she lives with her 4 children. Her house is attached to one of the largest mansions in Granada – a stark contrast between poor and rich.

What is supposed to be the living room is filled by a queensize bed and lots of professional disco speakers. This is where she guards all her material. There is hardly any room to move.
Maria Luisa proudly shows me the 3 new speakers, the new disco lights and a stage that she bought from the loan. It was a huge investment but worth it. She is now booked 7 days a week.
In fact, here business is flourishing so much that she was able to repay her loan in advance.

From the profits she makes, Maria Luisa plans to buy LED lights which would give her another competitive advantage in the market. Nobody else can offer LED lights in the market she is serving.

Life has not always been easy for Maria Luisa. She is a single mom with 4 children, of which 3 teenagers. She is proud to be self-sufficient. Her kids help her in the business and all go to school.
I brought her a print from her borrower profile on with photos from all of you lenders across the world. I explained that from the thousands of profiles on Kiva, you selected to support her. She then smiled, clearly affected by emotion.

In the photo are Maria Luisa with 2 of her sons, the 2nd and 4th child. The youngest is holding the printed borrower profiles and you can see the speakers, mixing panels and other material behind them.

Muchas gracias for your belief in Maria Luisa and her family.

Saludos from a hot Nicaragua where rainy season is starting,

Luan Nio
Kiva Fellow in Nicaragua

Kiva Fellows blog:

My personal blog:

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Inlägg för Amani (17e september 2012)

We wanted to let you know that Amani has another loan posted on Kiva! Here's the description of their new loan:

Amani is a 27-year-old conservative woman, so she asked her husband to take her place in the photo.

Amani helps in supporting the family by adding another small source of income from selling kitchen wares.

She now wants to add variety to what she has, so she applied for this youth loan in order to bring in more home products other than kitchen wares.

You can see Amani's new loan by visiting

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Inlägg för Mahmoud (31e juli 2012)

Mahmoud intended through your funded loan to purchase fruits and vegetables to sell from other farmers so that he can increase and diversify his sales.
This loan helped a lot in improving his living and his business at the same time.
He always plans to keep on improving his work and his income, to keep his family satisfied.

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Inlägg för Togtamurat (12e juni 2012)

Togtamurat is grateful with Kiva and their lenders' help to his business. With the loan of MNT 2,500,000 disbursed by XacBank branch in Bayan-Ulgii province, Kiva's Mongolian partner MFI, on December, 2010, he used a loan to increase working capital. The vegetables were purchased in large quantities and kept and sold out when price increased in May. He paid back his loan early, because his profits was increased.

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Inlägg för Sandra Yanira (24e maj 2012)


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Inlägg för Loise (22e mars 2012)

Thank you Kiva lenders for funding our client Loise. She had requested her loan to buy a weighing machine and to renovate her business. Unfortunately she defaulted her loan and could not be traced.

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Inlägg för Anonymous (10e januari 2012)

Dear Kiva lenders,

To celebrate the New Year, Ameen s.a.l. and Kiva would like to share one Ameen s.a.l. borrowers' success story with you. Ameen s.a.l. is very proud of the support that their Kiva loan product provides for Lebanese small- and micro-entrepreneurs. Ameen's Kiva loan is disbursed quickly (often in 1-2 days) and is smaller than many of their other loan products, with initial loan amounts between $ 300 and $ 1,200. This makes the Kiva loan particularly well-adapted to small business owners, who cope with unstable commodity prices, evolving client needs, and sudden, short-term business opportunities. Samir's story exemplifies the hard work and ingenuity of Ameen s.a.l.'s clients.

Samir is a Lebanese married man living with his wife and two kids in Borj Hammoud, a crowded area in the Matn region. He sells spare car parts since 1990, and has been working in the field for more than 20 years. Back in the early nineties, Samir had a BMW car and wanted to sell it, but the selling price was unsatisfying to him. After conducting a market research, he found out that disassembling the car and selling its spare parts would give him a better return, and so he did exactly that.

This was his first step in the business of selling spare parts. As years passed, he further expanded his business, opening his own shop and establishing a good reputation in the field. But with successes come setbacks. As new technologies invaded the market, traditional car mechanics found they were unable to adapt with the emerging market needs and many had to close up shop. This negatively affected Samir's business, since his main clients are mechanics.

In order to face these challenges, support his business and ensure the sustainability of his income, Samir needed to diversify his business offerings. However, to do that, he required capital. During a door-to-door promotion by an Ameen s.a.l. loan officer in the area, Samir was introduced to the Kiva loan product in 2010, to which he applied with the aim of fulfilling his need to diversify his business' offerings.

With the $ 1,200 loan Samir received, he purchased engine oils from bulk retailers at discounted prices and proceeded to benefit from their resale value, making a return on investment of $ 2,000. Thanks to the loan, he was able to diversify his inventory and consequently reboot his business with the profit earned. Nowadays, Samir is studying the possibility of opening yet a second shop and is optimistic about the future once again.

So from Ameen s.a.l. and Kiva, Happy New Year!

Kiva and Ameen s.a.l.

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Inlägg för Marvin Ramon (1a december 2011)

As my time winds down here in Leon, Nicaragua, I wanted to reach out to you, as Kiva lenders, for a couple reasons. First, hopefully I can paint a clearer picture of the country and microcredit environment that you have been supporting; and second, I would like to give you some more information about the Kiva field partner, Fundación Leon 2000 (FL 2000), that manages the relationships with the entrepreneurs that your kindness is assisting.

Truth be told, Nicaragua was not my top choice for a country placement as a newly minted Kiva Fellow (my initial focus was much further south in the Americas). I had visited Nicaragua once before, and felt that I was familiar with what I was heading towards. Of course, visiting for a week of vacation is one thing; living and working in a country for almost four months is quite another.

As I was before arriving here in May, you are likely aware of the recent (and not-so-recent) history of Nicaraguan struggles. However, the result has been a country left with the second highest level of poverty in the western hemisphere (after Haiti).

When I signed on for my second placement as a Kiva Fellow (which will be in Guatemala), my first choice was to stay in Nicaragua. The country I have come to know is one with an exceptionally rich culture filled with an extremely intelligent,open, and friendly populace. Nicaraguans have been subjected to many injustices, both from external and internal sources, but they remain a very proud people.

As Kiva has shared on its website, the microfinance industry in Nicaragua has faced some significant headwinds over the last several years. At the forefront is 'No Pago', a movement led mostly by farming groups in the north that have refused to pay back their microcredit loans, and that are looking for relief from the government, the microfinance industry, and anyone else that can potentially provide it. The other major challenge to the microcredit industry in Nicaragua has been the global financial crisis in 2008 and overall stagnant economy since then.

Kiva's field partner, Fundación Leon 2000, has weathered both fronts relatively well. Concerning the former, FL 2000 has very little direct exposure to the delinquencies associated with the 'No Pago' movement. To that point, the delinquency rate for Kiva loans through FL 2000 is approximately 1.50% and the default rate is de minimis. However, the news surrounding the 'No Pago' movement has hurt the ability to raise external capital in the last several years. Additionally, the overall global financial environment has added to the fundraising difficulties. As a result, FL 2000's client roster and loan portfolio have decreased markedly in recent years. Nonetheless, FL 2000 has tightened its fiscal belt by instituting cost cutting measures such as a reducing its staff and minimizing the use of utilities in its offices and thus has been able to maintain a strong position in its seven principal markets (Leon is the main office, and then there are six branches, primarily northwest of Managua) and be well-positioned for growth as the environment becomes more stable.

While the current economic backdrop has indeed exacerbated an already challenging small business climate, there are still a considerable number of stories that confirm how helpful your loans are to these entrepreneurs. One of Fundación Leon's clients that I was fortunate to meet provides an outstanding example of what a small amount of capital ($300, in this case) and a lot of hard work can accomplish. Roger Antonio of Nagarote started several years ago as a tailor's apprentice, learning a trade that he hoped would help him support his family. With a small loan from FL 2000, he was able to branch out on his own to build his own clientele in the local markets. Now after a pair of subsequent loans (which he used to buy fabric, threads, needles, scissors, sewing machine oil and various other tools) and hiring two employees to assist mostly with selling the dress shirts he sews, Roger Antonio has plans to expand out of his home and into his own shop. While he consistently works long hours, six or seven days a week, Roger Antonio not only is able to provide for his family, but he does so feeling a great amount of pride in the business he is successfully building.

Of course, there are many other clients of FL 2000 that have similar stories like that of Roger Antonio. On behalf of the scores of Fundación Leon clients that I met, and the thousands that I didn't, I would like to thank you for your generosity and giving these entrepreneurs an opportunity to improve their lives and those of their families.

Casey Cline
KF16 Nicaragua

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Inlägg för Kabunyansi Agalyawamu Savings And Credit, Mubende Group (31e augusti 2011)

Edison banked on his loan proceeds to purchase more cattle to resell. To all appearances, he now makes more sales revenue.

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Inlägg för Anonymous Group (27e juli 2011)

Martin says he used his portion of this kiva loan to purchase more foods to resell.

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Inlägg för Nazaret A Group (18e juli 2011)

Dear Kiva Lenders,rnrnWe apologize for being late in providing you with the update on Nazaret A Group. It has been more than one year after the loan for Nazaret A group was disbursed. This group has fattened the cattle during the loan term and has sold their cattle in a few months ago. rnrnIn order to get an update on this group, our Kiva Field Officer went to Oenif Village. He visited Melanus - a 45 year old farmer - one of Nazaret A group members. Melanus is married and has nine children – five of them are still at school. rnrnMelanus warmly welcomed the field officer in his house even though he was unwell at the time. He told about his experience during fattening the cattle. He said that he also faced difficulty in fattening the cattle, i.e. the bad weather and when the cattle was unwell and did not want to eat but he took care of the cattle patiently. His cattle reached 245 kg and he was able to generate profit of IDR 572,000. Melanus is grateful for the profit generated – He was able to support his family expenses from the profit generated. He spent the profit on uniform and some books for his children and the important thing is he could buy rice for his family.rnrnIn average, the cattle of Nazaret A group reach weight of 242.5 kg and each group member has been able to generate profit about IDR 448,000. The bad weather has had an impact on the cattle weight gained.rnrnMelanus was grateful that TLM and Kiva lenders had provide him as well as the other group members with an opportunity to get the loan. He hopes this program would always assist other poor farmers, especially in West Timor. rnrnThank you Kiva Lenders!!!rnrnTLM Staff

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Inlägg för Ursula (26e maj 2011)

Desde hace varios años Ursula se dedica a la venta de toda clase de verduras en el mercado de la zona donde vive, cuenta con su propia clientelay para abastecer su negocio de mas productos ha Kiva 1800 nuevos soles para implementar su negocio.

Ursula está muy agradecida ya que no es la primera vez que la apoyan varias personas mediante el programa Kiva para obtener el dinero y poder abastecer su negocio de productos para seguir satisfaciendo las necesidades de sus clientes, las ganancias que obtenga le ayudará a tene una mejor calidad de vida.

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Inlägg för Tamemsu Traders Group (24e mars 2011)

My name is David McNeill, and I am currently serving as a Kiva Fellow in Sierra Leone. For the past few weeks I have been working with Salone Microfinance Trust (SMT), one of Kiva's local partners based in northern Sierra Leone. SMT has one of the longest partnerships with Kiva, disbursing almost $2 million in loans to nearly 8000 people. In addition to directly helping the borrowers you lend to, your loans have also made it possible for SMT to expand its operations to provide capital to even more entrepreneurs.

As I worked with SMT in Makeni, I couldn't help but notice that electricity is one of the top challenges to operating a business in Sierra Leone. Right now the only sources of electricity for most people are gas-powered generators. With the rising cost of fuel, these generators are becoming increasingly expensive to operate, putting them beyond the reach of entrepreneurs running small businesses. In light of this, SMT is currently exploring the possibility of providing solar loans so their clients can obtain solar panels, chargers, and flashlights.

During my work with SMT, I had the pleasure to meet with many of the borrowers who benefit from the money you have lent, including Kadiatu Bangura. She lives with her extended family in a small compound of houses in the town of Makeni, not far from SMT's headquarters. Kadiatu uses the money she borrowed to buy large quantities of firewood and charcoal produced in outlying villages and sells it locally in Makeni. Every 2-3 weeks she pays a truck to transport a new load for her to sell. Kadiatu is making a good profit, which she says has allowed her to feed and clothe her family, as well as pay for her children's school fees.

The SMT staff told me that Kadiatu has been through several loan cycles and is one of their best clients. I could see that she really appreciates the loan and that it is significantly improving her life and her ability to care for her family.

From my visit with with Kadiatu and other borrowers, I saw that Kiva loans are not only reducing poverty, but also building stronger people, families, and communities. Thank you for partnering with Kiva and SMT to make that possible.

All the best,

David McNeill
KF14, Sierra Leone

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Inlägg för Las Leonas Group (9e mars 2011)

María del Pilar León Tenorio es miembro del grupo "Las leonas" el cual está pagando su préstamo.

Ella vive en el Estado de Puebla, en México. Se dedica a la venta de abarrotes, en una modesta tienda, y pidió este préstamo para la compra de mercancía y surtir su negocio y realizó su objetivo.

Se siente bien porque con el préstamo, surtió su tienda y pudo satisfacer mejor a sus clientes, lo que le genera mayor clientela y mayores ingresos.

Esta experiencia le permitió abrir una cuenta de ahorro para el futuro de su hijo, y de su familia,. porque quiere tener una estabilidad económica para el futuro.

María quiere continuar mejorando su negocio y ahora planea ampliarlo y vender también aceite para autos, ya que su negocio esta a orilla de carretera.

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Inlägg för Sylvia (4e mars 2011)

Sylvia Luces had a received PHP.47, 000.00 for her loan in ASHI. She used only half of her loan to her project while the remaining amount was used in hospitalization of her granddaughter and schooling of her son who is presently worked as seaman.

She wishes to extend her grateful thanks to the KIVA lenders for their trust.

Her loan really helps her not only in her project but for the unexpected needs of the family.

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Inlägg för Togtamurat (16e februari 2011)

Thank you for your ongoing support of Kiva and its entrepreneurs at XacBank, a field partner in Mongolia. Just recently, XacBank marked the two year anniversary of its partnership with Kiva. Over this time, you and other lenders have assisted over 2,950 entrepreneurs with $3,400,000 USD in loans. As a Kiva Fellow, I've been working at XacBank over the past six months and want to share a few of their interesting programs – the creation of green loans, the spread of mobile banking, and the promotion of organic products.

Did you know that Ulaanbaatar is ranked the world's 5th worst city for air pollution? The World Bank estimates that 60% of the air pollution comes from household heating systems and the fuel used to keep families warm in the winter. XacBank has partnered with Micro Energy Credits to develop green loans for items such as fuel efficient stoves, solar panels, warm housing covers, and energy efficient fuels.

Oyunchimeg, one of XacBank's eco loan clients, began sewing sheets from her ger, a traditional Mongolian felt tent, in 2009. Running her small business from her home means that she must simultaneously keep a fire going in order to stay warm. At the beginning of winter, Oyunchimeg took a microloan from XacBank in order to buy more environmentally-friendly fuel in bulk. Oyunchimeg said that the new fuel helped her save money on fuel costs in the long run and also helped her run her business from home.

As well as in the environmental sector, XacBank has been innovative in the mobile banking area. XacBank created a mobile banking service named AMAR, which is available in some of the most remote areas of Mongolia. Clients no longer have to travel to one of XacBank's physical branches; Clients can use a combination of cell phones and over 3,000 cash-handling agents, such as remote grocery stores and trusted individuals, to make a variety of transactions such as depositing, withdrawing, and transferring money.

Click here to watch a short video of XacBank's AMAR mobile banking service.

Altantsetseg is both a Kiva entrepreneur and AMAR mobile banking user. She operates a small business selling meat in the capital city of Ulaanbaatar. Altantsetseg says that she's a very busy woman running her small business, and normally doesn't have too much time to go to the bank office. Since becoming a user of the AMAR mobile banking service, Altantsetseg says it has really saved her time and made her business more efficient. She can take payments and send payments to and from her partners through AMAR.

XacBank has partnered with many organizations such as the Mongolian National Chamber of Commerce, large energy businesses and national media organizations to promote a project named Organic Mongolia. This project promotes organic goods grown and produced locally in Mongolia. It supports micro-businesses by providing low interest rate loans with no collateral requirements.

In addition to the loans, the project has many activities such as mass media advertising for the organic goods, training for entrepreneurs by professionals, certification of organic goods, and large scale trade fairs. So far, Organic Mongolia has assisted a wide variety of businesses like bee farms, greenhouses, soy bean production, and animal nutrition products. Click here to watch a video of some of Organic Mongolia's activities.

Recently, all of the Organic Mongolia partners volunteered one day to assist a local greenhouse in bringing in their harvest. The XacBank team cleared the greenhouse of cucumber vines and roots, and then planted a batch of lettuce. While the team members worked in the greenhouse, the media sponsors produced a small segment to promote organic farming and organic businesses to the Mongolian public.

The staff at XacBank are committed to reducing poverty in Mongolia through innovative activities like the ones I've shared with you. Thank you again for your continued support of Kiva entrepreneurs, and, in turn, the Kiva field partners that disburse the loans in Mongolia. Please feel free to join the XacBank lending team on Kiva.

Thank you,

Amber Barger, KF14 Mongolia

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Inlägg för Tambopata De Tipon Group (10e februari 2011)

Dear Kiva Lender,

Thank you for supporting borrowers in Peru through Asociación Arariwa. I have had the privilege of serving as a Kiva Fellow with Asociación Arariwa here in Cusco, Peru for the past three months and have been fortunate enough to meet some of Asociación Arariwa´s Kiva clients.

On my first day with Asociación Arariwa, I wondered how I would find the office without knowing how to pronounce the name. Arariwa was one of those Quechua words that escaped me until the Executive Director pointed to the mural of a man in traditional dress with a staff on the wall of one of their offices. "That is an Arariwa," he said, "the old leaders of the Andean community." More than just a leader, an Arariwa was considered to be the Andean community´s representative to nature and the gods and the guardian of the harvest. He was a wise man chosen from within the community to give advice for the harvest and to coordinate the distribution of food over the coming year.

In the same sense, Asociación Arariwa is an integral part of the Andean communities surrounding Cusco, Peru. Just as the Arariwa brought the Andean community together, Asociación Arariwa seeks to bring groups of 15-35 people together in village banks to help provide microcredit and education. The advice they give through education and training programs addresses the dangers of over-indebtedness, the importance of savings, business management strategies, health and nutrition. Additionally, Asociación Arariwa´s education, savings, and micro insurance services help the clients they serve to improve their own and their family´s quality of life.

Additionally, Asociación Arariwa´s clients are able to more easily access loans than they would be able to from traditional banks because of the lack of the requirement for physical collateral for the loan. The structure of Asociación Arariwa´s village banks also helps to empower its clients by placing them in leadership roles within the village bank and by encouraging collective responsibility. Out of all the services that Asociación Arariwa offers, just about all clients will list savings as their favorite. Asociación Arariwa helps to facilitate 3-5% of a client´s loan for savings which later grows within the village bank and is able to be lent out to group members who want a supplemental loan. All interest rates earned from these loans go straight into the client´s pockets!

On one of my visits to a village bank in Chinchero, one of the clients, Celina, explained to me how she had been working with Asociación Arariwa for the last five years, and that she joined because of her mother´s advice and because of how the saving services offered helped her to earn a little extra money. She was a good-natured woman with an incredibly cute baby who runs a restaurant selling fried trout in the Chinchero market. As we talked, she handed me a bowl of delicious rooster stew which was made to celebrate the close of the bank´s loan cycle.

Meeting entrepreneurs like Celina has made me realize the investment and impact that institutions like Asociación Arariwa make in the lives of their borrowers. Alleviation of poverty through increased access to financial services and microcredit doesn't happen overnight; Asociación Arariwa, through their microcredit, education, savings and micro insurance products, helps to sustainably improve the quality of their borrower´s lives not only for themselves but also for their children.

Kiva lenders like yourself have lent over $2,500,000 to over 6,000 Asociación Arariwa entrepreneurs over the past two and a half years. You can continue to lend to Asociación Arariwa here, or join their lending team here.

Thank you for your support!


Eric Burdullis

KF13, Asociación Arariwa, Peru

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Inlägg för Anonymous Group (2a februari 2011)

Louise Djibalène,

Ici, nous avons des difficultés d'organisation et aussi comme nous avons des problèmes entre nous, nous n'arrivons plus à nous entendre.
Ceci a entraîné une léthargie dans nos activités. Nous sommes donc en conflit entre nous pour voir comment trouver une solution aux difficultés rencontrées dans nos activités. D'abord c'est suite à un désaccord sur la façon de travailler, car dès le départ, nous avons eu des concurrents en ce qui concerne l'élevage que nous avons créé. Il nous fallait changer d'activité et nous ne sommes pas tombés d'accord sur ce qui devait être fait. Mais grâce à la médiation des autorités du village, nous avons repris les versements pour ce mois ci

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Inlägg för Anonymous Group (20e januari 2011)


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Inlägg för Anonymous Group (20e januari 2011)

Kiva has placed this loan in the default category, meaning that we no longer expect our field partner, SEM, to collect on this loan. As you may have read on SEMs Kiva partner page (, the institution has been experiencing difficulties with collections on their loans, and is undergoing a reorganization to improve their processes. However, since 6 months have passed without any collections from this borrower group, we no longer expect SEM to be able to collect on this particular loan. We are sorry to be unable to return your Kiva credit, and hope you will continue to support microfinance borrowers through Kiva.

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Inlägg för Sergyi Booblinskyi (17e november 2010)

Sergiy Booblinskyi used his loan properly for repairing the engine of his vehicle. It gave him the opportunity to work hard with both of his transportation units.

It was very important for Sergiy to receive more profit, because he had very difficult times this year. His mother passed away, and he needed money for funerals. Also his daughter became a schoolgirl and it also costed him a lot.

Now Sergiy continues working and developing his business. He is very grateful for all Kiva lenders for their support and hopes they will not refuse to help him again.

As this loan is coming to an end, please, consider supporting this or another borrower of Hope Ukraine.

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Inlägg för Anonymous Group (3e november 2010)

This loan has been refunded for the following reason:

Through regular review of loans and journals by Kiva staff, we disccovered that at the time of funding this loan had an incorrect loan use listed. For this reason, we have decided to refund this loan to lenders. We are working with MUK to ensure accuracy in their loan descriptions and hope you will use your Kiva credit to lend to another borrower.

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Inlägg för Anonymous Group (31e oktober 2010)

Shair Del would like to say when he took his kiva loans he could buy more wood and other important materials for his carpentry shop and now his monthly income is very good and he is happy because now he can support his family and thanks from all lenders.

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Inlägg för Sandra Yanira (26e oktober 2010)

Dear Kiva Lender,

Thank you for supporting borrowers in Guatemala through FAPE (Foundation for the Assistance of Small Businesses). I have had the privilege of serving as a Kiva Fellow with FAPE here in Guatemala City for the past three months, and have been fortunate enough to meet some of the borrowers to whom you have lent.

FAPE is a small microfinance institution with a big heart. Over the course of the last three months, I have begun to realize the lengths that some of Kiva´s Field Partners will take to support and improve the lives of those they serve. With its 16 loan officers the foundation actively works to adapt its microcredit products to its´ clients needs and to support them with business education and training and health services. Through these services, FAPE is able to empower its´ clients to improve their lives by providing them with the tools to do so.

Over the last three months, I have worked with FAPE to post some of their village banks, groups of 10-20 women communally seeking loans, to Kiva. The picture that accompanies this journal is of me with FAPE´s third Kiva village bank loan: "Hasta la Última Rincon". Riding to the bank opening in the FAPE pick-up truck, I joked with FAPE´s executive director and the head of FAPE´s health project "Gems of Hope" about the name. It means "Until the Last Corner" and after two hours on dirt roads, the name began to take on a new meaning.

We got lost twice (as we turned down alleys that were the second to last corners), but ultimately we found the group. I explained to them about Kiva and about the lenders all over the world that are interested in seeing them succeed, and then, FAPE´s health project was introduced: how at every bi-weekly meeting, the 14 women would have the opportunity to consult a doctor or nurse from the project and how a short training about health and nutrition (ending with a healthy meal being cooked!) would be offered. The meeting ended with smiles from the women and their kids as each member´s check and traditional Guatemalan tamales were passed out.

At that moment, I realized what a great support this loan was to this village bank´s members. For the majority, it was their first loan and throughout the meeting they would express how grateful they were for the loan, and how the loan would enable them to buy the materials to sew the traditional Guatemalan clothes they sold or to raise more chickens and pigs on their farm. But equally impressive is how far FAPE is going to go for these clients over the life of the loan. Once every two weeks, a loan officer will visit the village bank to collect repayments and check up on the member´s businesses, and accompanying the loan officer will be two medical professionals from FAPE´s health project offering their services. But like we joked earlier, this bank and many of the clients that FAPE serves are "Hasta La Última Rincon" so twice a month, FAPE personnel will truly be going the distance for the clients they serve.

Kiva lenders like yourself have lend $355,300 to over 500 FAPE entrepreneurs over the past three years. Thank you for your support and you can continue to lend to FAPE here or Guatemala here.

Eric Burdullis
KF12, FAPE, Guatemala

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Inlägg för Hawa Alhassan (11e augusti 2010)

Hawa Alhassan has been selling second hand clothing for about nine years. She carries her wares in a basin and moves from place to place. Her last stop is a village called kakumdo which is close to Abura, where she resides. Before receiving the loan she was buying her bails on credit and after selling she goes back to pay. The loan she received has helped her to buy with cash and even she has been able to buy more bails of clothing. She sometimes sell on credit but has a way of collecting her money form her customers, that is those who are not honorable are scraped out. She is married with six children and uses her profit mostly to cater basic needs like food, clothing and shelter. She would gladly take out another loan.

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Inlägg för Anonymous Group (29e juli 2010)

Kyomuhangi Patience second hand clothes business is now steadily in its stride owing much to the loan she got. She was able to buy more clothes in bulk for resell. Her finances have since then improved as a result of the more sells she has been making.

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Inlägg för Natasha Zinchuk (23e juli 2010)

I've been serving as a Kiva Fellow at HOPE Ukraine, Kiva's only field partner in Ukraine, for almost 3 months. Thanks in large part to your generosity and commitment to microfinance in Ukraine, HOPE Ukraine is successfully growing as an organization and has recently made efforts to diversify its portfolio to include agricultural loans. These loans to greenhouse farmers in eastern Ukraine have been extremely successful in helping HOPE weather an economic storm that has been particularly bad for HOPE Ukraine's clients.

The 2008 economic crisis had a direct and devastating impact on the Ukrainian economy, and its citizens are still reeling. I've gathered from HOPE Ukraine's clients and Loan Officers that the devaluation of the Ukrainian Hryvna against the US Dollar has had the most negative impact on Ukraine, and in particular its small business owners. The US Dollar plays an extremely important role in the banking, manufacturing, and retail sectors of the world economy. Here in Ukraine, most bank loans are repaid in dollars and most wholesale products are priced in dollars. So when the value of the Ukrainian Hryvna dropped from 5 UAH to the dollar to nearly 10 UAH to the dollar, small businesses were hit especially hard. Now the Hryvna has stabilized to about 8 UAH to 1 USD. For Lidiya Geiko, who runs a kiosk selling shoes and clothes in Dneprorudnyi, this meant the 10,000 UAH loan she received through HOPE Ukraine and Kiva purchased 2/3 as much product as it used to. She told me that she would not be able to stay open were it not for her microloan.

Meanwhile, repaying loans became harder than ever, even for the borrowers of HOPE Ukraine who received loans funded by you Kiva lenders. HOPE Ukraine delinquencies and defaults rose greatly between 2008 and 2009, and HOPE was forced to close several of its offices throughout Ukraine. Something needed to change.

HOPE Ukraine noticed greenhouse farmers throughout Kamenka in eastern Ukraine were getting small loans from different organizations and creating lucrative businesses with their greenhouses. Greenhouse farmers can yield as much as 35,000 UAH (about $4,750) from one greenhouse during a growing season. But purchasing the materials to build a new greenhouse costs a third of that and must be done before the growing season starts, when farming families lack that extra capital. So HOPE Ukraine introduced its own agricultural loans for the greenhouse farmers in Kamenka. A loan in January allows the farmer to have that extra money to build a greenhouse and repay his loan in two large chunks at the end of a 6 month loan term, after the completed greenhouse has already yielded its profits. These loans have been extremely successful. The office in Kamenka that manages these loans has a delinquency rate of less than 1%.

Ukrainians have been greenhouse-farming for generations. Under the Soviet Union, families were allowed to build small, recreational greenhouses that measured no more than 70 centimeters high and a meter long. If USSR officials came around and saw that they were any bigger, said Sergei Galushka, they would just mow them down with tractors.

Today, the greenhouses are massive. Sergei's were 60 meters long and 8 meters high. Driving along dirt roads through Kamenka Village in Ukraine, I must have seen hundreds of greenhouses, one after the other. They're really quite beautiful, round half cylinders, the sunlight reflecting off the opaque plastic covering steel and wooden bars.

The beauty of the greenhouse is that it has a built-in cycle that puts farmers months ahead of the natural growing season. With snow still on the ground, radish seeds are planted in a kind of "staging area" or prep-greenhouse. There they grow until the radishes are about one month away from being ready to harvest, and then are planted in the greenhouse. There the plants grow for another month and are harvested. At the time of harvesting, the tomato plants are growing in the staging greenhouse and will soon be moved to the greenhouse, while a new crop of tomatoes or maybe cucumbers are planted in the prep greenhouse.

One greenhouse crop of radishes yields about 7,000 Hryvna, and even more for tomatoes, cucumbers, and cabbage. Volodya Alekyan can just take his vegetables to the highway and set up a stand, where semi trucks will come from as far away as Moscow to get quality produce ahead of season. With such demand, greenhouse farmers can charge more for their produce and thus reap more profits.

HOPE Ukraine plans to expand its agricultural loan program, says the organization's director Andre Barkov. He hopes that the success of Kamenka's farmers will influence greenhouse farmers in neighboring villages where HOPE Ukraine does not yet work. This will be beneficial not only for HOPE Ukraine but more importantly for those residents of the villages who depend on farming for food and a sustainable income. To see all fundraising loans from HOPE Ukraine, click here. To get more involved, consider joining the HOPE Ukraine Kiva lending team!

I had so much fun going to Kamenka to visit the greenhouse farmers. They're so hard working and so warm and welcoming to someone such as I who interrupted their working day to visit them. After showing me around their farms, Volodya and his family invited me into their two-room home for Armenian coffee; Sergei and Oksana had me in for Ukrainian borsch and vodka.

Warm wishes from Ukraine,

Leah Gage, KF10, HOPE Ukraine

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Inlägg för Tuchukuliane Group (16e juli 2010)

La cliente Ngabo Muhima Yvonne remercie l'IMF Hekima, pour le crédit qu'elle a reçu dernièrement, un montant de 400$. Ce crédit lui a servi de renforcer son chiffre d'affaire et payer les frais scolaires de ses enfants. Il sied de signaler que ce crédit était rationnellement destiné dans le business de vente d'huile de palme. Cette cliente a aussi été victime de la décision municipale de Maire de la ville de Goma qui concerne la demolition des maisons et constructions anarchiques aux grands axes, routes, rues principales. Cependant par voie de conséquence le dépôt d'exposition pour cette cliente Ngabo Muhima Yvonne a été démoli. En dépit de tout, ce crédit a été plus rentable et profitable pour son entreprise et pour sa famille. Que Dieu bénisse hekima et ses partenaires.

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Inlägg för Anonymous Group (2a juli 2010)

Please excuse the mistake in the Kiva profile of the group. Through a lender's response on the journal, we found that in the borrower profile rice cultivation was the use of the loan- thanks for emphasizing this! Lending or avoiding to lend to businesses that are in conflict with individual values must be the lender's choice. Still we hope that you understand and excuse that mistakes can happen. Be sure that MUK puts lots of efforts in providing information about borrowers for Kiva and will put more attention on avoiding such inconvenience! Still, as a vegetarian myself, it is important to me to emphasize that women who live in traditional family structures in villages in Bali would have much fewer business opportunities without the pig business. To read more about the social impact of this type of business visit the Kiva fellows blog on Monday the 5th, when I post more background information about this topic (! Kiva fellow Anna Antoni

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Inlägg för Anonymous Group (1a juli 2010)

Agung Kade Sumarni took a loan from Kiva field partner MUK to purchase piglets like all of the group members of "Sari Amertha" group which used a special loan product from MUK. The women take care of the pigs so they are healthy and they feed them until the pig is big enough to sell for a price about 1 Dollar per kilo. The group decided to buy different pigs and use other pig feed than before they took this loan. They explained that the local pigs sometimes take one year to become big enough to sell for a good price but the more expensive "foreign" white pigs grow faster and thus provide a higher profit because they can be sold already after about 5 months. Pig breeding or fattening are typical businesses of Balinese women who can still handle their family's needs and can earn some extra money in the same time through providing pigs for the famous meal "babi guling"("rolling pig" over the fire). Agung Kade also has another business besides pig fattening. She makes traditional clothes which she sells to a trader who sells them in the capital of Bali, Denpasar. Taking a loan for pig breeding or fattening usually leads to several other loans with the goal to reach financial self-sufficiency on a higher scale of the business which can lead to a higher standard of living for the whole family. MUK supports the serious leading of the business through requesting a specific standard of keeping the pigs and hygiene. In case of a disease MUK provides free veterinary doctor's services to the pig group members and the doctor surveys and trains every pig group before disbursement of the loan. But also the social, non-financial aspect which is very prominent in women groups shouldn't be neglected. Agung Kade is a member of a group that builds a strong community in their village through regular meetings and support of each other if there is a problem with their businesses. The spirit of the community supports the empowerment of the women who are now more independent from their husbands because they seriously operate their own business. They simply have more perspectives since they formed a group and take loans. For more information about MUK, their work and life in Bali join the Kiva lending team (! Kiva fellow Anna Antoni

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Inlägg för Prosperidad Y Esperanza 1,2 Group (29e juni 2010)

Luz has a fritura, a small side shop where she fries chicken, plantains, and other various foods to sell. She is currently paying back her third loan and has seen her business grow over the past year in remarkable ways. She has used each loan to purchase more and more food to fry and wants to continue on with Esperanza. She hopes to one day have her own "complete" restaurant where she can serve many types of food beyond her current offering of fried meats and plantains. She is pictured here with her shop, getting ready to open up for the day.

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Inlägg för Tabe Sadat Group (23e juni 2010)

Ali jan would like to extend his gratitude to all lenders of Kiva specially the onces that have provided loan to him and to his group members.His work of handi craft making is going on in wonderful way. He has got lots of clients who likes his way of work. He would like to continue his partnership in the furture as well.

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Inlägg för Odo Ne Biakoye Group (4e juni 2010)

On September 17th, 2009, you helped fund a loan amount of $3575 to 'Odo Ne Biakoye' group. A Sinapi Aba Trust staff member recently caught up with Joyce, a member of the group to ask her about her loan experience. Here is what she had to say:

She is a trader, and used the entire loan to procure provisions of all kinds and food items such as sugar, rice, tomatoes, etc. in bulk.

According to Joyce, her business is okay except that sales are not very encouraging. There has been decline in the market trend. She is however, optimistic that things will work well in the near future. She reinvests the profits into her business and does not really encounter any difficulty during repayments.

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Inlägg för Natasha Zinchuk (6e maj 2010)

Natasha Zinchuk and her son Andriy run a store selling clothing, purses and shoes in central Mukachevo. Natasha owns the store and her son, Andriy, rents space there as well. This is Andriy's first year taking loans from HOPE Ukraine; Natasha has been taking loans since 2002. Both Natasha and Andriy are current borrowers on Kiva, and neither have been having difficulty repaying their loans. The HOPE Ukraine loan officer tells me they are both very good clients. They say they feel lucky to have stability, as theese days it is very difficult to own one's own business in Ukraine.

Natasha began as a small entrepreneur in 1996, after she lost her job due to the collapse of the Soviet Union. She began by selling household products in the outdoor market, but she said this business wasn't as successful. In 2001 she was able to purchase space in her current store. It was then she started selling clothes and shoes, which she says is a much more lucrative business. Andriy worked in his mom's business, located downstairs from their second floor apartment, when he was just a little boy. Today he runs his own business and takes his own loans along with his mother. Since they started taking microloans with HOPE, Natasha and Andriy have been able to double their business space and their profits have increased. They also rent space in their store to other merchants, which brings in even more income. Andriy hopes to continue working with his mother's business and open other stores. They both like working in retail and hope to see their business expand!

To make a loan to another HOPE Ukraine borrower, click here!

To learn more about HOPE Ukraine and the work they do with Kiva, consider joining the HOPE Ukraine Lending Team!

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Inlägg för Yutema Oeng (7e april 2010)

Mr. Yutema Oeng has been a construction contractor for more than three years. In September 2009, he applied for a loan of $350 to pay for workers fees.

Yutema works in his village and the nearby village. When the construction finishes 10%, his customers will give money to him. He has to pay for workers every week first, but he did not have money that why he decided to ask for the loan to help him.

As a result of the loan, Yutema can operate his business easily. And income from the business is used to pay for household expenditures such as food, clothes, battery charging and pay back the principal and interest. In the end, Yutema has paid off his loan already. He would like to say thank you to all the Kiva lenders who funded his loan and wishes them good luck.

Pictured: Mr. Yutema Oeng.

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Inlägg för Aminata Ndoye (17e mars 2010)

My name is Ilmari Soininen. Over the last five months I have worked as a Kiva Fellow with U-IMCEC Senegal, one of Kiva's partner institutions in West Africa. Through your lending you have gotten a glimpse into the lives of borrowers throughout Senegal – from fisherman in Yoff to vegetable vendors in Bambey. But have you ever wondered who brings you these stories? Who exactly is behind the camera?

Meet Kiva coordinator, Cheikh A.K. Seck. If you have lent to a borrower from Thies, Diourbel or Bambey over the last four or five months it is more than likely that is has been posted by Cheikh.

Cheikh has been a member of the U-IMCEC Thies team since July 2009, and is in charge of posting new loans and interviewing Kiva borrowers to see how they have progressed. Over the past three months, I have worked closely with Cheikh. I sat down with him to get his take on our work. (Translated from French)

How do you describe Kiva to clients (in 2 or 3 sentences)? Do you think clients really understand what Kiva is / represents?

As the amount of savings are very low, IMCEC must seek financial partners to satisfy its customers. Kiva offers U-IMCEC financing for small loans of up to 500,000 FCFA (about $1100). Further, Kiva connects donors who are aware of the importance of micro-credit in poor countries and its local partners, such as U-IMCEC, through its website. These donors from around the world, will be able to loan to a client of their choice using the information we upload to the site. At the end, we see most often that our clients have grasped the message.

What aspect do you find most interesting about working on the Kiva portfolio?

I enjoy the interview with the client because it really gives me a chance to get to know the client which allows me to better tell their story.

Do you remember any interesting client stories or something which happened to you when you were in the field?

When visiting clients for journal updates, the clients aren't always sure what to make of me. When I tell them I am from the bank, many think I am there as a debt collector! On the other end, I remember a particular client who thought I was there to give her a reward for paying her loan on time!

How would you describe people's attitudes to microfinance in Senegal in general? In your neighborhood?

People are increasingly becoming more and more interested in microcredit, which for me explains the rapid proliferation of microfinance institutions in our society. Both women and men are becoming involved in microfinance for one purpose: to benefit from a loan. As for my home town of Bargny (about 30km from Thies), I think it is just like all other towns in Senegal. We have a pretty positive attitude towards microfinance institutions, and in Bargny I think it's the local fisherman and the female traders who are particularly active in applying for loans.
One thing I have noticed in speaking with clients is that many still find interest rates quite high. We will continue to improve to try to improve on this.

Cheikh recently became a Kiva lender himself - listen to Cheikh's message ( ) and join our team at (

Thanks! Merci! Diere Dieuf!

Ilmari Soininen

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Inlägg för Odo Ne Biakoye Group (16e mars 2010)

Dear Kiva Lenders,

My name is Maia Pelleg and I'm a Kiva Fellow working with Sinapi Aba Trust (SAT) in Ghana. I completed my first placement as a Kiva Fellow in Kenya in January, 2010 and was thrilled to embark on an experience with Kiva and microfinance in the new context of West Africa. The initial goals of my posting in Ghana included implementing a repayment reporting system, facilitating a process that enables SAT to provide journal updates to lenders, and making necessary changes to increase efficiency.

I arrived in Kumasi and quickly ascertained that Ghana's reputation for tremendous hospitality stems from reality. The staff of SAT welcomed me warmly and graciously offered to acquaint me with various aspects of Ashanti society.

Unfortunately, as I discovered the kindness of SAT staff, I also found that SAT's existing Kiva system was extremely flawed and lacked proper management. A close look revealed that many loan amounts and terms published on the Kiva website were incorrect. Additionally, the presence of multiple duplicate loan postings was concerning.

Kiva took immediate action and paused SAT for fundraising on We have evaluated many aspects of the SAT partnership, and I am confident that operational weaknesses can be corrected and adequate management information systems can be utilized.

I have spent the last few weeks designing a new decentralized Kiva system and have already begun implementing changes. Including loan officers from around the country in Kiva processes serves as an additional check as well as enables SAT to provide journal updates and scale in the future. Central to the new Kiva platform is an internal data system that will verify loan details and automate frequent and accurate repayment reports. Additionally, a senior regional manager will be stepping in as Kiva Coordinator at the end of this month.

I am working directly with SAT leadership and staff to execute identified changes. Just this week I trained two branches and several loan officers in how to collect borrower information and photographs for Kiva's site. I can attest to SAT's commitment to a strong Kiva partnership based on integrity and honesty. I am confident that we are able to bridge any gaps that existed in SAT's process of raising funds on Kiva.

This experience serves as a reminder of how seriously Kiva takes transparency and accountability. I hope you will share my ongoing confidence in SAT and more generally in microfinance. Sinapi Aba Trust makes a real difference in the lives of low-income entrepreneurs and I am excited to be a part of enabling them to continue their lending footprint.

Maia Pelleg

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Inlägg för 21 De Enero Group (9e mars 2010)

Thank you for all of your support in funding loans posted by Fundacion AgroCapital in Bolivia. My name is Nilima Achwal and I am a Kiva Fellow that spent the last ten weeks working with Fundacion AgroCapital in different branches throughout Bolivia. In my time there, I had the opportunity to meet with hundreds of entrepreneurs that receive loans from this institution, and I'm excited to be able to share an inside glimpse of microfinance in Bolivia with you.

Your loan to an AgroCapital entrepreneur has had a tangible impact on both AgroCapital and your borrower. AgroCapital has received $1.7 million interest-free in the last two years from Kiva lenders, which has allowed them to develop as an institution, for example by implementing a new Social Impact division to measure how well their loans are helping to alleviate regional poverty. On an individual level, series of loans have helped many, many women and men to get their businesses off their feet, allowing them to have more financial stability and personal independence.

I found Bolivians to be an honest and hardworking people, so it has been a pleasure working with them for the last few months. My blog post describes one particularly inspiring moment that reveals a lot about the Bolivian psyche.

Many entrepreneurs at AgroCapital benefit from group loans, the easiest type of loan to access, while others are fortunate enough to have the necessary documents and prerequisites for the larger individual loans. Normally in a group loan environment, social pressure forces the members to pay back on time since if one member defaults, the entire group will be cut off from future access to loans. For this reason, the women in the group usually bond and support one another through hard times. These groups often become micro-communities of moral and professional support for women that are starting their first businesses and have little experience. I've found that it fascinating that every group has a strong and distinct personality based on its location, social class, industry, experience with microfinance, and personal traits. This personality plays a large role in the success of their ventures, though I've found that the vast majority of entrepreneurs are able to expand their businesses and improve their profits as a result of a series of micro-loans, of which your loan is an integral part.

Besides just the economic benefits, I've found that these micro-loans have helped entrepreneurs have more choices, reduce their stress at home, fulfill themselves personally, and ultimately empower themselves as productive and valuable individuals. For example, many women tell me happily and gratefully that the businesses they started with their micro-loans have both brought in more profits for the household and also allowed them to be at home with their children the whole day. A male entrepreneur even mentioned that he hoped his business would allow him to quit the corrupt local police force as soon as possible. These intangible benefits play a large, invisible role in giving these entrepreneurs more freedom and a better quality of life.

Entrepreneur after entrepreneur inspired me with her drive, spirit, and unbelievably hard work.
Martha from Las Reynas group used micro-loans to transform her home from one bed house with a wood fire for cooking to a home with a kitchen with a stove and refrigerator, enough food, a television, and a bed for every member of the family.

Micro-loans also helped give birth to Leonarda and her husband's hugely successful and innovative solar-powered oven business, with which they have been able to comfortably sustain their family.
Virginia from San Expedito group, a proud, energetic single mother of nine children, sums up the drive of many AgroCapital entrepreneurs: "I'm doing well and have made all my payments without a problem. All by myself, I'm lifting myself up, little by little. When you have a responsibility, you do what you need to to fulfill it, even if it means not eating so your kids can. It's hard, but as they say, 'Wanting is power.' If you want something enough, you will make it happen."

Two women express their gratitude in person in these short videos:
Carmen's increased business has allowed her provide more for her children and dream of the future.
Emma explains that it was difficult to take out loans before AgroCapital came into town.

Your micro-loans light the fire for personal and professional development and allow people to find a way to a better life. Our entrepreneurs are hugely grateful and surprised to know there are strangers in foreign lands that care about their ventures. Keep lending, and don't ever doubt that you are making a footprint in someone's life.

On behalf of Kiva, AgroCapital, and all of the entrepreneurs, thank you for your support.


Nilima Achwal
Kiva Fellow Class 8
Fundacion AgroCapital, Bolivia

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Inlägg för Ariunzaya Munhbaatar (29e januari 2010)

Ariunzaya Munhbaatar wants to thank all her Kiva lenders and the Kiva microfund for her loan. She received a 900,000 tugrug (~650 USD) loan from XacBank, Kiva's MFI partner in Mongolia, in March 2009 and is currently paying off the loan. She requested this loan to purchase more inventory for her clothing retail business. She bought all kinds of women's and men's clothes from China and has sold 85% of her inventory. In first 3 or 4 months her business was quite successful. However, after having being very sick she was incapable of continuing her business and is currently staying home. Her husband is a ticket collector at Narantuul, one of the biggest markets in Mongolia. They are paying the loan with her husband's income. Because her business stopped, she and her family are having a difficult time.

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Inlägg för Anonymous Group (19e januari 2010)

Ici, tout le groupe est content, par ce que nous venons de réaliser une très bonne affaire, surtout en fin d'année, où nous avons vendu tout le stock de poulet qui était en engraissement. Ceci, pour vous informer de notre entière satisfaction et de pouvoir vous remercier pour tout ce que vous avez fait pour aider des jeunes désoeuvrés comme nous, à touver une activité génératrice de revenu et de nous rendre digne dans la société dans laquelle nous vivons tous les jours. Nous ne vous remercierons jamais assez. Mais sachez que vous resterz dans nos coeur à jamais. Encore une fois, merci!!!!!!!!

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Inlägg för Zenabu Yeboah (6e oktober 2009)

Zenabu is a food vendor. She still prepares and sells kenkey, a food made from corn dough and served hot with grinded pepper and fried fish. Zenabu says she seen some improvement in her family life in terms of finance. She is very grateful to the lenders of the loan which has brought some financial transformation in her life.

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Inlägg för Yrma (4e september 2009)

Gracias al préstamo que le dieron, Yrma remodeló su restaurante con nuevas decoraciones motivando de esta manera captar la atención de las personas, siendo ahora sus asiduos clientes. El trabajo y dedicación de Yrma de complacer a sus comensales ha generado su concurrencia produciendo un negocio muy rentable y con buenas ganancias. Con el capital de trabajo que obtiene volverá invertirlo para mejorar el servicio y el ambiente de su restaurante. Yrma continuará con su trabajo haciéndolo con mucho empeño, asimismo también desea continuar trabajando en su banco Comunal, ya que encuentra el apoyo y motivación en los miembros que lo conforman, para salir adelante y cumplir con sus metas. Yrma muestra su agradecimiento a Microfinanzas PRISMA por la confianza de concederle el préstamo para que pueda desarrollar y mejorar su negocio.

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Inlägg för 21 De Enero Group (17e augusti 2009)

Today, I was able to speak with the women of 21 de enero group to check up on the impact of their Kiva loan.

Eliana has sold clothing and Yanbal cosmetics for 12 years, since she was 22 years old and single. Now, she is married (her husband works for an oil company) and her business has grown a lot since she started taking out loans a few years ago. Eliana buys clothing locally and travels by train once a week to a village twelve hours away, near the Brazilian border, to sell her products. From there, she brings back Brazilian coffee and other different and interesting products to sell back in villages near her hometown. It´s difficult to transport that much by herself, but she checks in her products and pays 48 cents per kilogram. She had stopped working for four months while she was pregnant, but now she´s back to work. "You don´t make a lot, but you still make something," she told me with a positive smile. "My quality of life has improved a LOT since I took out the loan." Eliana has been able to buy more food for her home, move houses, and keep some savings with her new profits since she started taking out loans. She says the profits help out with all of her household duties. In the future, she would really like to have her own house and improve her business more in order to provide a better quality of life for her three little children that are 4 years, 2 years, and 4 months old.

Jovana has a small food store and also sells Yanbal cosmetics door-to-door. With her loan, Jovana was able to buy more capital for both businesses, including sugar, rice, cosmetics, and perfume. "My businesses have improved quite a bit," she tells me with a satisfied smile. With her profits, she has been able to buy more of what was lacking in her home, including armchairs and a blender. She just started her businesses two years ago when she got married. Before, she was completely dependent on her mother, but now she´s a independent woman. She and her husband still live in her mother´s home, and she would like to buy a house for themselves in the future.

Marioli is a receptionist at a telephone operator´s clinic. In her spare time, she used to sell Essica cosmetics and used her loan to buy more cosmetics for that business. The business helped her out financially, but she´s stopped it recently since she is so busy with her current job.

Marianela is an accountant in a cable factory, and she started her own business selling jeans and steel jewelry since she can make profits week to week, instead of waiting until the end of the month for her paycheck from her other job. She used her loan to buy more jeans and jewelry to sell, and she also invested in her other business that she has now shut down, the sale of motorcycles. The part of the loan that she invested in jeans and jewelry has increased her profits. She likes taking out loans from this institution, Agrocapital, because the loans are very short-term and the interest is not too high (30%) compared to her other options. In addition, they do not require all of the documents that formal would require, like proof of home ownership or mortgage. In the future, she is hoping to be the local director of the saleswomen of the Brazilian jewelry company with which she currently works.

Cecelia simultaneously works in a tire company and has her own business selling silver jewelry. She buys the jewelry from a company called ¨Casa de Jollera.¨ The loan helped Cecelia to buy more jewelry to sell, and it has increased her profits. There is a group of families that are her loyal clients, and she also finds more clients by selling door-to-door. In the future, she would like to open up her own store.

If these entrepreneurs interested you, consider lending to more AgroCapital clients here.

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Inlägg för Annet Kibirango's Group (12e juni 2009)

Dear Kiva Lender,

I am a Kiva Fellow and I'm finishing my Kiva Fellowship with Pearl Microfinance. I have been working in Kampala, Uganda with Pearl since February 2009. My daily tasks have mainly involved visiting the Kiva entrepreneurs and helping Grace, the Kiva Coordinator at Pearl, to improve the system that is used to post loans from Pearl on Kiva’s Web site.

First, I want to say - thank you for all your support for the entrepreneurs at Pearl Microfinance Limited!

Pearl has been working with Kiva for about 20 months. In that time, Kiva lenders have funded over 5,000 entrepreneurs and lent more than $1.5 million! You are receiving this message because you were one of those lenders.

Pearl is an interesting microfinance institution. Unlike many other microfinance institutions on Kiva, Pearl is a for-profit organization. Although this may make some people cringe, during my time here, I have come to see it as a tremendously positive thing. Pearl is constantly trying to make its processes as efficient and effective as possible. They are concerned about retention of clients and having a good reputation. I think this forces them to create loan products that are appealing to the clients.

Uganda’s microfinance market is very large. There are many clients and many providers. Although there are a large number of providers, the providers are not necessarily in multiple locations in Uganda. Pearl is one of the most widespread microfinance institutions in Uganda. It has offices in many different locations, and the credit officers are committed to using public transport or riding their motorcycles for hours to meet clients which makes the range even larger!

Until a few weeks ago, Pearl was not able to post loans from this huge geographical area on Kiva’s Web site. They could post only from their central location. While I was serving there as a Kiva Fellow, Grace and I were able to change the process so the Pearl employees can post from several locations in Uganda.

Pearls’ clients have been incredibly inspiring! I loved meeting them, hearing the ways that their lives have changed because of their loans, and meeting their children, who will grow up more comfortable because of the investments that their parents are making.

• Read about a hairdresser whose loans really changed her life:

• Read about a Ugandan florist with many dreams:

• Read about a woman who just went into the business of raising pigs!

Although there are many wonderful stories that you hear, there are also stories of clients who fall sick or lose family members and cannot repay their loans. These stories are rarely reported on the Kiva Web site, because the Pearl entrepreneurs who cannot repay are members of loan groups, and when a group member cannot repay, the group covers for the individual.

Listen to one young lady speak about her mother, who fell sick and will be unable to repay her part of the group loan. Her mother has since passed on and the group has repaid Maritta’s portion of the loan.

During my time here, Grace, the Kiva Coordinator, became very interested in getting involved in the lending team for Pearl. I hope that you will join this team to continue to get updates about Pearl from Grace and get the chance to communicate with other supporters of Pearl!

Thanks again for all your support for Pearl!

Stephanie Koczela
KF7 Uganda

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