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Posts Tagged ‘saving’

Saving at home is convenient, private and predator-free.

In a study of 301 households that belonged to village financial institutions (VFIs) in 37 villages in Cambodia, my team from the Canadian Co-operative Association asked what would cause them to deposit more savings? By far the strongest response was: “the managers must show more respect for the rules.” (Towards Safety & Self-Reliance, p. 51.)

The rules to which they referred were not complex: they expected the managers to refrain from (more…)

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Arusha Women's Market. Villagers save at home from one harvest to the next, losing a lot of their savings.

The second afternoon of a three-day strategic planning workshop for a rural credit union in Kilimanjaro region. Five board members and the manager have just completed a pilot market survey in their village. Their board room is spacious and airy – though one wall is missing, and a kid goat sits comfortably under the manager’s chair.

They report back on what they have learned.

(more…)

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In Asia's villages, girls often wear gold. Photo credit: Vincent Johnson

A few years ago, in a small village in Kampong Chhnang, I met Ms. Cheng Yeng. In her early 40s and mother of 3 grown children, Ms. Cheng was clearly an excellent household money manager – bright, articulate, and shrewd. She told me that she uses cash earned after her rice and palm sugar harvests to buy gold, last year at $38.50 per chi.

Yet in the months before the harvest (more…)

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I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood,
and I, I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
— Robert Frost

Some three decades ago the experts announced that only one source of funds could deliver microfinance services sustainably to billions of the world’s poorest people. That source was Western capital markets and the profit-maximizing investors participating in them.

When F.W. Raiffeisen launched the first microfinance revolution (1864-1945) he used a different source of funds: (more…)

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Rural villages in the developing world are oral cultures; that is cultures in which the technologies of literacy (especially writing and print) are unfamiliar to most people.

Kraing Tbong Village Bank, Takeo

A village bank in Cambodia

(more…)

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