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Government is a Prerequisite for Hope in Haiti

Government is a Prerequisite for Hope in Haiti

The other day I had the chance to hear Michael Schlein speak about microfinance.  Schlein is the current CEO of Accion, one of the largest microfinance organizations in the world, serving over 150 million clients in during its history.  It currently operates 62 microfinance institutions in 31 countries covering 4.9 million outstanding loans.  He said a few things that I found out interesting. Having only worked as CEO for one year, Schlein spent the better part of 2010 visiting Accion’s…

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Helping Haiti: Microfinance and Natural Disasters

Helping Haiti: Microfinance and Natural Disasters

What is the role of microfinance in the immediate aftermath of a natural disaster?   The short answer is that, under the circumstances, microcredit is less effective.  A prerequisite for microcredit is a functioning economy.  Goods and services need to be worth money for capital infusions to make a difference.  For example, an MFI lends money to a woman for the purpose of opening a general store.  The woman uses the loan to buy soap from one retailer and soft…

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