The term microcredit is multifaceted; it is difficult to define and refers to a wide variety of lending practices. Clients of microcredit borrow individually and in groups, known as self-help groups (SHGs); they borrow to invest directly in their business, or in their children’s education; they borrow to pay for healthcare, or build a personal home. Microcredit encompasses not only loans, but financial tools such as savings accounts and insurance.
As Oikocredit gears up for our upcoming event in Washington, DC this Friday, I find myself getting really excited. My anticipation has been mounting for a while, and not just because it’s going to be a great party (and everyone loves a party!). Considering all the press surrounding microfinance lately, I’m particularly looking forward to this Awareness Party as an opportunity to engage in discussion at a much-needed time.
We all know there are many socially responsible organizations out there. However, not all fully implement their goals and missions. It’s easy to want to change things, to have a desire to improve the world, but it’s much more difficult to make sure those changes are carried out successfully and consistently. Because of this, social performance, transparency, and enforcement have become leading focuses in the non-profit world.