We help a man in Burkina Faso buy some dried fish



Time for our monthly Kiva post.

This month we went with this fine looking bunch from Burkina Faso, mainly because we’ve never loaned money to anyone in that country before and we’re trying to fill in our map of the world. Can I confess something? Until I found this loan I’d never heard of them. If I’d been asked to point to Burkina Faso on a map I probably would have been pointed to Italy, figuring it was a cafe. Worldly? Who me? Not a lot.

It’s the dark bit. Like you didn’t know.

Burkina Faso is a beautiful looking country but the locals don’t get to enjoy it for too long. Average life expectancy is just about 50 and about 1% of the adult population suffer from HIV. Despite this there’s only one doctor for every 10,000 people. And I think I’ve got it tough trying to book an appointment with my GP. Burkina Faso isn’t without its problems, but hopefully our US$25 loan will help these blokes etch out a better living for their families.

Here’s what the group’s Kiva application had to say (they focus on the story of one member of the group to represent them):

“Youraogo is the leader of the DEELWENDE group. Married, he is the father of three children. The eldest is fourteen, and the youngest four years old. Two of them attend school. He is financially responsible for five people in total. He has sold dried fish for fifteen years, and buys his stock from wholesalers. His customers are mostly women. He is looking to purchase three crates of dried fish, wanting to strengthen his business with the profits.His ambition is to become a wholesaler in the business and to take good care of his family.”

Kiva makes funds available to people traditional banks usually wouldn’t touch, because the loans are too small or the risk, in terms of security, considered too great. This is people helping people. With Kiva, the money we lend to people comes back in the form of repayments, and then we get to lend the money out again.

 If you’d like to know more about Kiva, and maybe even give it a go with their free trial, click anywhere in this sentence and you will be taken to their website.

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