Women’s World Banking – WWB

Womens World Banking WWB
Women’s World Banking is the only microfinance network with an explicit focus on women. Our network of 39 financial organizations from 27 countries—also known as microfinance institutions—located around the world provide small loans, sometimes as modest as $100, to people to start their businesses. Women’s World Banking is focused on ensuring women have access to these microloans. Customers use these loans in different ways: some purchase a cycle to transport vegetables to a market, or use the money to buy raw materials; others buy fertilizer for their crops, or a sewing machine to start a tailoring business. However, they all have one goal: to make a decent living and support their families’ basic needs. Many are able to send their kids to school for the first time, eat three square meals a day or make seemingly small home improvements that can actually have a significant effect on the household such as move from a mud floor home to a cement floor.

Microfinance is about more than credit and has the capacity to help more than entrepreneurs. WWB helps microfinance institutions move away from a strictly credit-led approach toward providing a broader array of financial products and services, including savings andinsurance to help the poor build comprehensive financial safety nets.

WWB, headquartered in New York, serves as an umbrella organization to the 39 local microfinance organizations. We advocate for the benefits of microfinance and for the need to serve women, conduct research and share best practices. But most importantly, we develop vital financial products to enable microfinance organizations to better serve their clients and achieve their mission to bring people out of poverty. http://www.swwb.org/


Giving for the Global Good

We are looking to target the tens of millions of American teen students who are the wealthiest, most connected and most diverse generation in our history. They control literally billions in spending annually and represent nearly every country, religion, and language on earth. Over 95% of this country’s teens make regular use of the Internet to chat, email, and connect with friends and family worldwide and are uniquely poised to tackle the world’s greatest problems.

Our proposition is that this generation has the power and will to leverage their collective influence to support grassroots initiatives around the world, and through their successes (and some failures) gain a deeper understanding of their power for change and of the role of America and its citizens in an increasingly interconnected and interdependent world.

Giving for the Global Goodis an idea whose time has come. We feel that it can be a brand embraced by a small kernel of the American youth who feel engaged by the need to be proactive and do something about creating a sustainable future for the world. There are many kids out there who have desire, the resources and the drive to engage in supporting microfinance initiatives utilizing the viral communication channels of the Internet and the rapidly growing social networks.

It is possible, by getting the information on the potential of global change using MicroFinance, that these kids could become bankers to the ‘unbankable’, and in doing so help the worlds working poor.

This site is a simple visual and link based aggregator, enabling both kids and adults a single place to find out about the ideas of microfinance, microloans and the concepts behind becoming a social entrepreneur.

Please contact us if you would like us to include a visual, a link and an ‘about’ for your site, to help you get found in this keyword space




Greenstar delivers solar power, health, education and environmental programs to small villages in the developing world — and connects people in those villages, and their traditional culture, to the global community.

We work with people in traditional cultures to express the voice of the community to the world through original music, artwork, photography and video and other arts. That voice is connected with respect and dignity to the land, to families, to language, tradition, to the past and to a clear vision of the future. Income from this priceless “digital culture” is used to fund an ongoing, community-driven process of literacy, local business, education and training, public health, and environmental programs.



The Calvert Foundation


There are communities around the world in need of homes, jobs, and facilities such as daycare. You want to help, but don’t want to give money away. Is it possible to still help? Yes!

Blending Financial and Social Returns

For over 10 years, Calvert Foundation, a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization, has been working to make community investment a safe and logical option for all investors seeking to make a positive social impact. We focus on using investment capital, rather than conventional philanthropy, to create a sustainable, scalable model that enables nonprofit organizations and social enterprises to address critical social problems.

The Calvert Foundation


Kiva on TechCrunch

I follow Michael Arrington’s TechCrunch pretty closely – in the online space,  who doesn’t ?

Today I read a long write up Mike did on Kiva, the microloan site.  As of late, I have been putting my money where my mouth is, donating to the EFF, the ACLU and Freepress.

Through a Facebook group Indie Credit that is rallying people to collectively donate to Kiva, I opened one, then two Kiva ( Abiba Awel + Mrs. Savong Hang Village Bank Group ) loans, which I found somehow gratifying.  It wasn’t motivated by guilt, of ego, just that here was an opportunity to really help individuals realize their dreams,  in a different way that just giving money to a charity group.

Kiva Brings Microlending Home To U.S. Entrepreneurs In Need


The financial crisis has made a lasting impact on small businesses around the world and here at home in the United States. With the credit crunch creating a virtual standstill of lending, small businesses in the U.S. are facing an uphill battle to find funds, especially if their financial history isn’t stellar. Kiva.org, one of the web’s most interesting innovators in the micro-lending space, is hoping to come to the aid of U.S. entrepreneurs and small businesses by launching a pilot expansion that would allow individuals anywhere to make small loans to low-income U.S. entrepreneurs through Kiva’s platform.  ~

In April alone, Kiva members loaned $4.5 million to entrepreneurs, a 56 percent year-over-year increase and a record month for Kiva. Since the microfinance platform’s birth in 2005, over $75 million has been loaned through Kiva.org to support more than 180,000 individuals from 44 developing countries. Kiva’s president, Premal Shah, says this new initiative to include U.S. businesses increasingly made sense as the financial markets deteriorated and traditional lending began to dry up even in the U.S.

According to Kiva, small businesses represent more than 87 percent of all businesses in the United States, and, on average, these micro-enterprises are responsible for 900,000 new jobs created per year according to the Association for Enterprise Opportunity. This number seems small to me but the impact of small businesses on job creation is clear. To make matters worse, Kiva says more than 10 million business owners faced difficulty obtaining capital—even before the credit crisis and economic slowdown.

Kiva will launch today with the ability to for anyone to make loans to 45 small businesses and entrepreneurs seeking funding from the areas of New York, San Francisco, Boston, Atlanta and Miami. The businesses range in purpose and services, from salons to landscaping to day care facilities. For example, a Queens, NY-based entrepreneur delivers baked goods to bodegas in New York. He is looking to raise $6000 to fund insulation technology for his trucks.

So now Kiva is coming to the USA – Thanks Mike for the info – in this new political landscape – irony abounds !


Open Your Hands Project

My longtime freind Margaret Roach and sometime creative collaborator launched open Your hands project a couple of years ago and has built a website to follow the project:

Open Your Hands - Nepal

Open Your Hands - Nepal

You, too, can join the circle. Find out how you can make a difference by opening your hands to the children of Birta Deurali, Nepal, and nearby communities, as those listed below have to date. Open Your Hands’ Federal 501(c) (3) charitable status is pending approval, so we regret that at this time your contributions are not tax-deductible. Email us at openyourhandsinc at gmail dot com to indicate your interest and we will happily contact you when our application is approved, and new projects are being funded. Link to site Here.


The Panos Network – Simply Extraordinary !


I was searching Flickr to find a photographer based in Katmandu Nepal to do an assignment for me, and in my keyword search using Flickr’s tagging search engine I found the Panos Network. Wow ! Blew my mind, wanted to use ‘Giving for the Global Good’ to get the word out.

Panos in not one site, but 9 individual sites, all across the world, each with a unique look, feel and message.  In writing this post I realize that this site, Giving for the Global Good, actually could help get the word out and inspire people to dial into Planet Earth and help out.

Panos’ mission statement is clear, and yet so sophisticated – the understanding that to get the message out there needs to be a dynamic conduit for, what I call the 3 Ds – the desperate, disenfranchised, and the diaspora, get get their voices heard to the global community.

Twenty years after the creation of Panos, the vision of a global network of institutes striving towards a common goal – ensuring that information is effectively used to foster public debate, pluralism and democracy – has become a reality.

In 1974, UK journalist Jon Tinker started Earthscan, a unit of the International Institute for Environment and Development which offered journalists (and later NGOs) objective information on key global issues and on policy options for addressing them.

By 1986 Jon had transformed Earthscan’s Southern media programme into a new independent institution: Panos.

From the outset, as part of its commitment to Southern-led development, Panos aimed to build a network of independent institutes around the world.

During the late 1990s offices opened in Zambia, Haiti, Nepal, Ethiopia and India, among others. In 2000 West Africa became the first autonomous Southern institute, and six years later Eastern Africa completed the transition.

It was Gordon Goodman, then head of the Stockholm Environment Institute, who proposed that we take the name Panos – meaning ‘beacon’ in the Doric version of classical Greek.

Today, in Nepali, a panas is an oil lamp around which people gather to discuss important issues, and in Amharic the word means a torch.

Appropriately enough, the prefix pan means ‘all’ or ‘universal’ in modern Latin, resonating with our global approach.



Panos South Asia

Panos France

Panos Caribe

Panos London

Panos West Afrika

Panos Southern Afrika

Panos Canada


MicroCredit Fundraising Ride Canada to Mexico

Check out Global Agents for Change

On May 31st, more than 20 people will ride their bikes 3,000km from Vancouver to Tijuana, Mexico to raise money and awareness for entrepreneurs in developing countries.

Alphonsine Zahourou is 44 years old, a single mother, and lives with her 4 children in Yopugon, a township in the north of Abidjan. Alphonsine sells fruits and vegetables in the Yopougon open market. This business is the sole resource from which she provides for the household and education expenses of her family. She wants to purchase goods in bulk to benefit from lower prices.\" width=

Agents of Change, a nonprofit registered charity, hopes to raise $1 million from the challenge to connect those living in poverty with microcredit – small, interest-free loans. The loans are to help entrepreneurs in developing countries by helping to get them out of poverty.

The organization is raising awareness about how microcredit can help families escape poverty, with help from its partner organization, Kiva. Kiva, a nonprofit organization based in San Francisco, provides loans to entrepreneurs in developing countries. Agents of Change, which has so far raised more than $8,000 for microcredit, is trying to raise the million dollar fund so people in developing countries can be provided with loans through Kiva.

Kiva’s website provides a platform for borrowers to post their stories, pictures, business goals and needs. Supporters can view the profiles and get a choice of who they would like to support, as well as receive information on the borrowers’ progress and how the money is being used.

Through Kiva, lenders receive their money back after the loan is repaid, but that money can also be used again to help another entrepreneur. The million dollar fund through Agents of Change, however, isn’t refundable as it’s being set up to be used as a constant source of funding for Kiva.

Through Kiva, the businesses are screened by recognized local microfinance partners. All of the funds go directly to the borrower. So far, Kiva’s repayment rate is estimated to be 97 per cent successful.

Dr. Muhammad Yunus, who won the 2006 Nobel Peace Prize and is the inspiration behind the cause, founded the microcredit bank, Grameen Bank of Bangladesh.


The Challenges of One Laptop per Child

LINK to Official OLPC site

This post might be a bit out of scope for Giving for the Global Good, but as a fairly serious geek in tune with the current events relative to the various initiatives to find a way to help educate the children of the world and ramp them up the mainstream western industrialized nations about things like the Internet and the World Wide Web, I just wanted to make a quick post about OLPC (One Laptop per Child) Nicholas Negroponte’s initiative to give the third world’s children laptops and the access to the Internet.

Ivan Krsti comments on the challenges of the OLPC and the contentious issues of Windows verses Open Source and really seems to drill down to the important core issues of this subject in his recent post, found here on slashdot

and here on the core blog post LINK


Mothers Day Opportunity to Make a Difference

This Mother’s Day is May 11th. Unitus has created a unique opportunity to celebrate the occasion while also helping the fight against global poverty.

Check out the Empowering Women website you tell the story of the inspiring and empowering women in your life. With each online tribute, you’ll also be spreading empowerment and economic opportunity to women throughout the developing world—proceeds from the campaign help Unitus microfinance partners reach more hardworking women with life-changing microfinance services.