Displaying all posts under the topic of Ultra Poor
December 28, 2011
Critics of microfinance have knocked down an army of straw men in recent years, and 2011 was no different. But it’s high time for microfinance practitioners to stop being defensive. We know enough about the perils and potentials of poverty-focused microfinance to address the real needs of the poor.
April 6, 2011
"Half the World is Unbanked" for the first time presented data proving that more than 2.5 billion people (half the world’s adult population) don’t have access to a bank account. Many of these individuals fall into a category we typically call “the poorest of the poor.” In the past five years, FAI and other researchers have set out to find out if this population can be helped—and how....
A previous post introduced projects that focus on ultra-poor households, in Bangladesh and India. The post ended with a promise to share the results of the impact evaluation of the project implemented by SKS in Andhra Pradesh, India. The results I share here are preliminary. Additional data and finer analyses are on the way, but I wanted to deliver on that promise.
Can the poorest be reached with finance? “Ultra poor” members of society face a series of constraints and deprivations that distinguish them from the general poor. Limited social networks, chronic malnutrition, and reliance on patronage systems characterize a socioeconomic class that is hard to “bank.” Research now indicates that most microfinance institutions serve poor and lower-income customers, but not the poorest.
July 30, 2010
January 7, 2010
A new year brings some good news: BRAC’s founder and Chairperson, Fazle Hasan Abed, is to be knighted by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II for services in tackling poverty and empowering the poor in Bangladesh and globally.
November 30, 2009
It’s no secret few MFIs have had much success mobilizing the “poorest of the poor” into their programs. This failure has remained a persistent irritant in an otherwise phenomenally successful industry.
Microfinance advocates have generally taken one of two approaches to the problem:
1) Press on with the spectacular growth approach, increasing financial access (a good thing) but doing little to help the very poor; or