On Wednesday morning, I woke up at 7:00 to get ready for call I had with some head honchos at Kiva about how we can put solar energy loans up on the Kiva website. After that, I had to talk to the Kiva microfinance partnerships manager for Asian MFIs about an Excel model he built that automatically generates profiles to be uploaded onto the Kiva website. I am modifying it to fit the specific needs of NWTF, but the process of following his logic is complicated and tedious. I needed to go straight to the source. By 9:30, I was ready to officially start the day.
Last Saturday, a group of 26 Canadians came to Bacolod as part of a dental mission organized by the Rotary Club of Vancouver. There are five dentists, a handful of hygienists, and others that are distributing eyeglasses or acting as gophers. The mission is being held in a gymnasium in the city of Talisay, about 20 minutes north of Bacolod. The group sees between 200 and 300 clients per day, performing mostly extractions with some fillings. Clients hail from mostly the surrounding branches, which also happen to be first branches to post Kiva clients. I had heard that the clients from Hinigaran branch would be at the mission on Wednesday. I’d been meaning to get down to Hinigaran for a round of client interviews, but hadn’t had the chance. Also, collecting information for Kiva journals usually means a loan officer or branch manager has to take you around to each client – a nuisance, to be sure. So, armed with a list of Kiva clients in Hinigaran, I caught a ride in one of the vans heading that way. Continue reading