Update from the Field: New Products in Microfinance, Over-Indebtedness + Transparency

Compiled by Kathrin Gerner, KF16, Rwanda

Meru, Kenya (by Claire Markham)

This week on the Kiva fellows blog, start out by learning about three new microfinance products – microinsurance in Indonesia, higher education loans in the Philippines and green and water loans in Kenya. Continue on to Nepal to admire the handiwork of artisan borrowers. Make your way to Ecuador to find out more about the risk of indebtedness. Share the fellows’ personal experiences with the recent elections in Nicaragua and rush hour traffic in Uganda. Finish by taking a critical look at transparency in microfinance and Kiva’s responsibility with regards to transparency.

Microinsurance in Indonesia: What are the Options for Kiva Borrowers?
Country: Indonesia / Fellow: Laurie Young (KF16)

Laurie takes a look at Vision Fund Indonesia’s current microinsurance products.

Artisan Borrowers of BPW-Patan, Nepal
Country: Nepal / Fellow: Abhinab Basnyat (KF16)

Abhinab visits Kiva borrowers in Nepal and admires their handicraft.

Necessary “No”
Country: Ecuador / Fellow: Marcus Berkowitz (KF16)

Marcus explains why Cooperativa San Jose must say “no” to some borrowers who risk over-indebtedness.

Team Kiva: World Police?
Country: Tanzania / Fellow: Lauren Barra (KF16)

Lauren explores whether Kiva has a responsibility to promote microfinance transparency and what Kiva must do to meet this responsibility.

Red and Black to Pink, Peace and Love: The Reign of Daniel
Country: Nicaragua / Fellow: Jim Burke (KF16)

Jim shines some light on the results of the recent elections in Nicaragua.

Study Now, Pay Now: Funding Higher Education in the Philippines
Country: Philippines / Fellow: Jill Hall (KF16)

Jill answers questions about higher education loan products in the Philippines.

The Kampala Commute
Country: Uganda / Fellow: Andrew Huelsenbeck (KF16)

Andrew shares his experience getting around the Ugandan capital during rush hour.

Going Green? Overcoming Cultural Barriers to Promote Green Loans (Part 2)
Country: Kenya / Fellow: Claire Markham (KF16)

Claire attempts to answer the question of how an MFI can break through cultural barriers to implement a successful green and water loan program.

Updates from the past month:
Earthquakes, 5Ks + The Pain of Sickness and Loss
Expanding the Reach of Microfinance, Downsizing Development + Why We Kiva
Green Loans, Dark Alleys + On-the-Ground Footage of it All
Kiva-style Microfinance, Reggaeton + a Journey though the Commercial Jungle
Loan Use, Agriculture Loans + Stuff Kiva Fellows Like

Plus more pictures from the past week:

Indonesia (by Laurie Young)

Nepal (by Abhinab Basnyat)

Ecuador (by Marcus Berkowitz)

Tanzania (by Lauren Barra)

Nicaragua (by Jim Burke)

Philippines (by Jill Hall)

Kenya (by Claire Markham)

About the author

Kathrin Gerner

As the Field Support Specialist for Francophone Africa, Kathrin works with Kiva partners to make sure they get the most out of working with Kiva, and to ensure that Kiva responds effectively to partners' changing needs. Kathrin previously served as a Kiva Fellow Togo and Rwanda and holds a B.S. in International Trade & Finance. After working at Deloitte as a Senior Consultant for four years, she decided to leave the corporate world to spend a year exploring several countries in East Asia and Africa. Her journey has now led her to Kigali, Rwanda, where she is based when she is not visiting Kiva partners in Francophone Africa. Kathrin is fluent in German and French and she is currently working on her Kinyarwanda.