November 7th was the 1 year anniversary of the end of Ebola in Sierra Leone. Everyone in the streets stood still for 3 minutes at 11am to both remember and rejoice.... Continue Reading >>
On April 16, 2016, a magnitude 7.8 earthquake destroyed much of Manabí, Ecuador. The death toll was more than 600, with nearly 13,000 injured. Additionally, more than 26,000 people were forced into shelters or tent communities after losing their homes. But only weeks after the devastating disaster, Fundación ESPOIR had already sprung into action. The newly homeless were sheltered in tents donated by the Chinese government and the United Nations High... Continue Reading >>
As a Kiva Fellow, each field visit to meet Kiva’s borrowers feels like an exciting, new experience! I compare it to reading a new book each time; and instead of starting at the beginning, you get to read the last page first. Today, I had the pleasure of visiting one of Kiva’s borrowers “Señora Carmen” at her farm in the idyllic Urquillos village in the Sacred Valley to see how her Kiva story turned out. We arrived at... Continue Reading >>
Earlier this month, two of my colleagues from Kiva HQ in San Francisco visited me in Phnom Penh as a part of their annual Kiva Staff Partner visit. The purpose of the Kiva Staff Partner visits is to allow Kiva employees that are based in San Francisco and don’t have regular contact with the day-to-day operations of Kiva on-the-ground to reconnect to our mission by spending a week in the field in a country of their choosing, where...Continue Reading >>
Call it fate, divine intervention, or mere coincidence, life sometimes — quite unexpectedly — gives you exactly what you need at just the right time.
That was certainly the case for me last week after the U.S. elections. The results were not what I’d hoped for, and I found myself questioning, well, pretty much everything.... Continue Reading >>
October 2016. Three people, one car, and a long day ahead. For the first time of my fellowship here, I will be out of Ouagadougou, for the first time I will be meeting borrowers’ groups. And no less than 4 are scheduled today! I feel so excited to finally be out there meeting Kiva’s and Microstart’s borrowers! Fast forward… October 2016, at the end of a very long day. Three people. One car. 3 chickens. MY chickens. Because I’m Nassara (the local word for “white person”),... Continue Reading >>
“We have very productive land here. We just need enough water to grow our crops” Irene said repeatedly as we were taking a tour of her farm in Kalamba, Kenya. Irene and her family’s primary business is managing their three-acre farm that sits in Makueni County in central Kenya. On their land, Irene grows a variety of crops including peas, tomatoes, maize and mangos. While the family has had several successful months of higher than average yields, Irene expressed her anxiety of having enough water in the coming months as we toured her farm. Irene’s concerns were not unique. I also visited... Continue Reading >>
Tattoos, t-shirts and elaborate sugar skulls have become increasingly popular in art and fashion, but do you know the cultural significance behind these intricate designs?
Dia de los Muertos—Day of the Dead—is a holiday celebrated throughout Latin America, though it is most strongly associated with Mexico, where the tradition originated. Assured that...Continue Reading >>