Fellows Blog Posts by tinkgunn

May 16, 2011 GH Ghana

by Jacqueline Gunn, KF13 Ghana, KF14 Ukraine

For the past 7 months I have been roaming the world as a Kiva fellow. I began in the lovely town of Cape Coast in the Central Region of Ghana where I spent my days in the office and my evenings and weekends on the beach. When I applied for a second fellowship, my only request was that it provided contrast to Ghana. Working in an industrial factory city in Eastern Ukraine has certainly delivered that. I arrived in Winter and it was -20 degrees Celsius outside and not much warmer inside.

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Apr 14, 2011 UA Ukraine

If you looked at this town from above you would see lines and lines of giant structures which could be mistaken for spaceships.  The truth is that these are infact enormous greenhouses where thousands upon thousands of plants are nurtured from seed to fruit, ready for sale.


This town is also where many of HOPE Ukraine’s clients live, taking loans to build greenhouses, buy seeds, develop heating systems and ultimately make a profit to look after...

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Mar 15, 2011 UA Ukraine

The Ukrainian Flag on the first sunny day in Zaporozhye

I have been in the Ukraine for a month now to work with HOPE Ukraine for my second Kiva fellowship. Whilst I was in Ghana for KF13 life felt very easy. I was really fortunate to be visiting clients on field trips most weeks, the sun was shining and life by the beach was very relaxing. In February I moved to the Ukraine for Kiva Fellowship number two and I’ll be honest, it was a bit of a challenge. I’m...

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Feb 15, 2011 GH Ghana

In the past few months, the Indian microfinance industry has been in the spotlight. A few Kiva Fellows wanted to learn what the issues there are, and what can be done to prevent them in the future. We have presented our findings in a series of blog posts over the past few days. Given the inherent complexities, the multiple viewpoints and an ever changing political and legal landscape, our work is only intended to provide a top-level summary of the situation as it stands now. If you are interested in learning more about microfinance in India, we encourage you to explore these issues...

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Dec 21, 2010 GH Ghana

Before I came to Ghana and during my first month here, a lot of questions about microfinance had been going through my mind.

One of the biggest questions and probably the main reason I chose to apply to become a Kiva Fellow was that I wanted to see for myself whether microfinance was able to make a positive impact on people’s lives. Making a difference is really important to me and the concept of microfinance almost seemed too good to be true- if it really works, then surely this can be the biggest key to reducing widespread poverty?

Whenever I choose a not...

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Dec 3, 2010 GH Ghana

by Jacqueline Gunn- KF13, CRAN Ghana

Food forms the backbone of any growing society. Food sustains people. Many thousands of individuals create a living through food production, distribution and on a large scale, exportation. People communicate and build communities through food- joining together to prepare a meal before sitting down to enjoy it whilst talking and connecting.

This is especially so in Ghana- one of the most popular national dishes, fufu, actually requires two people to prepare it- one person turning the dough in a wooden bowl whilst the other pounds it...

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Nov 22, 2010 GH Ghana

by Jacqueline Gunn, KF13. Christian Rural Aid Network, Cape Coast- Ghana

One of the first things I noticed about living in Ghana is the ebb and flow of sound. It feels like Ghana is living by a constant rhythm which is created in every household, on every street and every road.

Where I live is pretty rural- a walk away from the nearest road and along a dirt track which constantly changes due to the weather. Even though we are a way away from town, we are never missing some kind of sound. The goats we live with constantly bleat, the insects provide a...

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Nov 1, 2010

Monday 1st November marks the start of the 13th class of Kiva Fellows. In various locations across the world, our class of 24 individuals from a large variety of different backgrounds, ages and interests will be eagerly stepping into their host MFI’s office to start their journey as a Kiva Fellow in the field.

In reality, this journey started many months ago when we took the decision to apply and start along the road towards becoming a fellow with Kiva. From the very beginning, Kiva impressed me with its organisation and efficiency throughout the process. This continued into our...

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