Empowering Women with Microcredit

2000 Microcredit Summit Campaign Report

 
Compiled and edited by:
Lise Adams
Anna Awimbo
Nathanael Goldberg
Cristina Sanchez
 

With assistance from:
Sarah L. Crowe
Rony Guiteau
Denise Hughes
Mamie Lawrence
Ruth Moreno
Jason Morris
Heather Staley

 
Contents:
 Overview
 United Nations Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing
 The Microcredit Summit
 Four Core Themes: Setting the Direction
 Survey Methodology
 Findings
 Looking Ahead
 Appendices

Rajamma lives in Karnataka, India.  Before she received her first loan from The Bridge Foundation (TBF), she was doing housework in "upper-caste" homes so she could feed her daughters the leftover scraps of food. She became so desperate that she borrowed money from a rich landowner. Unable to repay him, she was forced to send her daughters to work in his home--as virtual slaves. Rajamma joined TBF's local Self Help Group and took out a loan of Rs 7,000 (US$196) to purchase a milk cow. Within 10 months, she cleared the loan and released her daughters from their bond. She earns over Rs 1,200 (US$34) each month. With her savings she bought half an acre of land and has taken another loan to irrigate it for groundnut cultivation. Rajamma's eldest daughter is learning tailoring while the younger girls are in school.

With visible pride, Rajamma says that TBF has helped her regain her dignity and self-worth. She is one of the most active members in the group and is accepted as an equal in her village.

-- Opportunity International
Overview

The Microcredit Summit Campaign was established in 1997 in response to the desperate need of hundreds of millions of women like Rajamma. The Campaign seeks to reach 100 million of the worldís poorest families, especially the women of those families, with credit for self-employment and other financial and business services by 2005. Over the last three years, 1,065 microcredit[1] institutions have reported the number of clients they are reaching to the Campaign, 512 of them reporting in the last five months. This document assesses the Campaignís contribution to the objectives of the Fourth World Conference on Women held in Beijing in 1995. From self-reported data, we find that these 1,065 institutions are reaching 13.8 million poorest clients[2], 10.3 million or 75 percent of whom are women. At the time of the 1997 Microcredit Summit it was estimated that eight million poorest clients were being reached. That estimate was supported in a Campaign survey done the following year. The most recent survey indicates an increase of more than 6 million poorest clients being reached over a two year period[3] (January 1, 1998 to December 31, 1999), an increase of 82 percent. Of the 512 programs reporting data that covers January 1, 1999 to December 31, 1999, the growth in the number of poorest women being reached over the last year is 1.4 million, an increase of 16 percent. While this progress is impressive, the Campaign still has a long way to go to fulfill its mission over the next six years.

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United Nations Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing

The United Nations Fourth World Conference on Women, held in Beijing in September 1995, was the largest gathering ever to focus on the well-being of women. It attracted tens of thousands of women and men from around the world who came determined to find ways to end the marginalization and subjugation of women like Rajamma.

Rajamma is not alone. The World Bank estimates in its World Development Indicators 2000 that 1.2 billion people around the world live on less than $1 a day. According to the United Nations Development Programís Human Development Report 1999, "Nearly 340 million women are not expected to survive to age 40." An intergenerational transfer of poverty along gender lines ensures that girls born into poverty become women who will remain in poverty. Gender bias and the low priority on young women in existing poverty alleviation programs further restrict the abilities and opportunities of young women to improve their lives.

It was with these grim realities in mind, and the fact that most of the goals from the 1985 Nairobi Third World Conference on Women were not met, that delegates to the 1995 Fourth World Conference on Women called upon all sectors of society to act upon the following 12 critical areas of concern:
 

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The Microcredit Summit

Inspired in part by concerns raised at the Beijing Conference, more than 2,900 people representing 1,500 institutions from 137 countries gathered at the Microcredit Summit in Washington, D.C. in February, 1997. Delegates set the ambitious goal of reaching 100 million of the worldís poorest families, especially the women of those families, with credit for self-employment and other financial and business services by the year 2005. While not a panacea, microcredit provides a powerful tool for progress in nearly all of the 12 critical areas of concern outlined at Beijing.

Consider Elvia, a 25-year-old single parent from Guatemala, a country where the non-governmental organization CARE USA reports that approximately 20 percent of women under 18 become unwed mothers. Elvia comes from a large, poor family of 11 brothers and sisters. She became pregnant at 19 and was abandoned by the babyís father. She later took loans from CARE and created a sewing and chicken-raising business. With her mother she sells 600 chickens every seven weeks. She vows to ensure that her six year-old daughter will not make the same mistakes she has made.

Elviaís involvement in this microcredit program has brought positive changes to her own life, changes that reflect progress in a number of the Beijing Conferenceís 12 critical areas of concern. The microcredit program has begun to reduce the poverty of three generations of women in her family, improved the likelihood that her daughterís education will be better than her own, and that both will have better health care. The credit program has improved Elviaís access to financial resources, increased her power and ability to make decisions for herself, and ensured the advancement and human rights of both the women in her family and the women in her borrowing group. The program has given her the ability to look beyond her survival needs and help safeguard her environment and improved her ability to uphold the rights of the girl-child, her own daughter.

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Four Core Themes: Setting the Direction

At the launch of the Microcredit Summit, too many in the field of microfinance argued for a focus on building financially self-sufficient institutions at the expense of reaching the poorest families. However, members of the Microcredit Summit Campaign are demonstrating that there does not have to be a trade-off. Combining institutional financial self-sufficiency with reaching the poorest is attainable and urgently needed.

The Microcredit Summit Campaign has four core themes, extracted from the Summitís 55-page Declaration and Plan of Action. The four core themes are:

1. Reaching the Poorest:  The Summit recognizes that the field of microfinance includes institutions providing financial and other services to constituencies that -- while not necessarily among the poorest -- are overlooked by the traditional banking sector.  However, the Summit specifically focuses on reaching the poorest families, defined in the Declaration and Plan of Action as families in developing countries among the bottom 50 percent of those living below their nationís poverty line.  Another way of looking at this target is to see the 1.2 billion people living in absolute poverty as comprising some 240 million families.  These 240 million families comprise the group from which most of the Microcredit Summitís target of 100 million poorest will come.  Within industrialized countries the Summit is focused on all of those living below their nationís poverty line.  The Summitís in-depth work to promote the use of quality poverty measurements is outlined on pages 8 and 9.

2. Reaching and Empowering WomenExperience shows that women are a good credit risk, and that woman-run businesses tend to benefit family members more directly than those run by men. [4] At the same time, through earning an income women achieve a higher status in their homes, their communities, and their nations.

3. Building Financially Self-Sufficient Institutions: The Declaration and Plan of Action emphasizes the importance of programs in developing countries reaching financial self-sufficiency. Experience has shown that microcredit programs in developing countries can improve their efficiency and structure their interest rates and fees to eventually cover their operating and financial costs.  This is demonstrated powerfully in a paper commissioned by the Campaign titled: The Microcredit Summitís Challenge: Building Financially Self-Sufficient Institutions While Maintaining a Commitment to Reaching the Poorest.  Day-long courses offered by the Campaign at global and regional meetings held from 1999 through 2001 train practitioners in this area.

Through the economic context in industrialized countries is radically different, the Summit encourages programs in industrialized countries to explore ways of becoming self-sufficient so that, to the greatest extent possible, their operating costs will be covered through direct revenue from program services.

4. Ensuring a Positive, Measurable Impact on the Lives of Clients and their Families:  While financial measures such as program repayment rates give an indication of the strength of a microcredit institution, the Microcredit Summit is committed to programs having a positive, measurable impact on the lives of the very poor. Two impact assessment studies conducted by the non-governmental microcredit organization Freedom From Hunger showed that current clients of its affiliate institutions in Honduras and Mali experienced positive program impact at the individual, household, and community levels. The studies demonstrated that when compared to non-clients, current clients were more likely to have larger enterprises; experience an increase in personal income and household food consumption; have personal savings; and feel a greater sense of empowerment and higher self esteem.[5]

Within the Microcredit Summit Campaign the theme of ensuring impact is addressed in a paper titled: Measuring Transformation: Assessing and Improving the Impact of Microcredit, and in day-long courses offered at global and regional meetings.

The four core themes of the Microcredit Summit Campaign help focus the Campaign not only on the number of clients reached but also on the quality of the practitionersí work. The Campaign will have failed if 100 million families are reached, but they were not among the poorest when they joined the program. The Campaign will have failed if 100 million families are reached, but few of the clients were women. The Campaign will have failed if 100 million families are reached, but the institutions are not strong enough to continue providing services to future clients. The Campaign will have failed if 100 million families are reached, but there is little impact on the lives of the clients and their families.

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Survey Methodology

This report is based upon results from a survey undertaken by the Microcredit Summit Secretariat. As of December 1999, more than 1,600 microcredit institutions had joined the Summitís Council of Practitioners. In doing so, each institution endorsed the Summitís goal and agreed to submit an Action Plan within one year of joining the council. The Action Plan outlines how each institution will contribute to the Summitís goal.

In November 1999, Institutional Action Plan grids for the year 2000 were mailed in English, French, and Spanish to these 1,600 institutions. The two-page grid asked questions such as: 1) how many active clients did you have as of December 31, 1999? 2) how many of those clients were among the poorest when they joined the program? 3) what poverty measurement did you use to determine this? 4) what percent of the poorest clients were women? 5) what was the average size of the first loan? 6) how many active savers do you have? 7) what is the average savings? 8) what was the percent of institutional financial self-sufficiency? 9) what percentage of the clients, who were among the poorest when they joined the program, have crossed the poverty line?

All practitioner Action Plans submitted in 1998 and 1999 were reviewed by Summit staff for clarity. This process continues with the Action Plans submitted in 2000. Letters are sent to each institution asking for clarification of certain aspects of their plan or acknowledging receipt if no clarification is needed. This review process should not be taken as an indication of verification.

In an effort to verify the data from some of the largest institutions in the world, however, the fifty largest institutions in each of the following regions -- Africa, Asia and Latin America -- were asked to provide the Campaign with donor agencies, research organizations, networks, and other institutions that could verify their data. The results can be found in Appendix 1 along with a detailed explanation of the verification process.

In order to encourage responses for this yearís report, the Microcredit Summit Secretariat conducted a phone campaign reaching 270 of the largest 325 programs that had previously reported to the Campaign. These 270 programs, estimated to reach nearly 90 percent of the poorest clients, were encouraged to submit the 2000 Action Plan.
 

The totals in this report have been calculated from three categories of responses: 1) 512 institutions that turned in a 2000 Action Plan during the last five months, 2) 191 Institutions that did not turn in a 2000 Action Plan but submitted a 1999 Action Plan, and 3) 362 institutions that neither turned in a 2000 nor a 1999 Action Plan, but turned in an Action Plan or Institutional Profile in 1998 or 1997. This latter category, comprising 362 institutions, accounts for 1,333,079 total clients, including 779,395 poorest clients, 52 percent of whom are women. These poorest clients account for less than 6 percent of the overall total of poorest clients.

Again, we must stress that the data in this document is self-reported and that there is an insufficient number of inexpensive poverty measurements in use. To this end, the Microcredit Summit Campaign is working with practitioners to identify and implement cost-effective poverty measurements (see finding 2).

What follows are results from the larger survey of 1,065 microcredit institutions and from the survey of those institutions whose data was verified.

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Finding 1: Programs report reaching 82 percent more poorest clients (over 6 million more poorest families) during the two year period from January 1, 1998 to December 31, 1999. The numbers increased from 7.6 million at the end of 1997 to 13.8 million at the end of 1999.

512 programs are reporting a 16 percent increase in the number of poorest women reached in the past year (January 1, 1999 to December 31, 1999), an increase of 1.4 million poorest women.

1,065 established microcredit practitioners responded to the survey. These programs report reaching 23,555,689 active clients. According to the information these programs provided, they are currently serving 13,779,872 of the poorest families, 75 percent of whom are women.
 
Year Total number of client reported Number of "poorest" clients reported Number of "poorest" clients who are women
12/31/98
1,065 institutions
20,938,899 12,221,918 8,839,706
12/31/99
1,065 institutions
23,555,689 13,779,872 10,273,900

Analysis By Region
 
Region Number of programs reporting Number of clients reported 1998 Number of clients reported 1999 Number of poorest1 clients reported 1998 Number of poorest1 clients reported 1999 Number of women clients poorest1 reported 1998 Number of women clients poorest1 reported 1999
Africa 455 2,974,318 3,833,565 2,149,517 2,617,861 1,142,614 1,526,267
Asia 352 16,798,605 18,427,125 9,513,544 10,498,656 7,350,121 8,316,313
Latin America & Caribbean 152 989,800 1,109,708 452,436 531,228 290,364 355,253
Middle East 16 44,225 46,925 28,071 28,807 15,501 15,680
Developing World Totals 975 20,806,948 23,417,323 12,143,568 13,676,552 8,798,600 10,213,513
North America 48 40,439 46,925 28,071 28,807 15,501 15,680
Europe & NIS 42 40,439 43,750 16,566 18,519 11,144 13,022
Industrialized World Totals 90 131,951 138,366 78,350 103,320 41,106 60,387
Global World Totals 1,065 20,938,899 23,555,689 12,221,918 13,779,872 8,839,706 10,273,900

1 The Summit Declaration anticipated that the majority of borrowers would be in the developing world. However, microcredit has proven to be effective in industrialized countries as well, despite a radically different economic context. In industrialized countries the Campaign is focused on the poor, those families who were living below their nation's poverty line when they received their first loan and/or training and technical assistance.

As mentioned above, the Microcredit Summit Campaign has initiated a confirmationa process with the Institutional Action Plans submitted in the year 2000. The fifty largest institutions in each of the following regions--Africa, Asia and Latin America--were asked to provide the Campaign with donor agencies, research institutions, networks and other institutions that could cooroborate their data.

The data from 78 practitioner institutions was confirmed[6]  by at least one other organization. These 78 institutions report reaching 9.3 million poorest at the end of 1999, or 67 percent of the total number of poorest clients reported. Eighty percent of these 9.3 million poorest clients are women.

The Summit expects the early years of the Campaign to be characterized by the modest growth of many small programs and the establishment of new programs. While growth in the number of borrowers is important, the Summit is more concerned with helping these new and expanding programs focus on reaching the poorest, especially women; develop self-sufficient institutions; and adhere to other best practices, which are essentially sound business practices.

It should be stressed that this data does not represent the total number of microcredit programs or clients in the Campaign or worldwide. (More than 600 practitioner institutions in the Campaign have not yet reported on their programs.) The Summit is also unable to determine how many clients are participating in more than one program. In order to avoid double-counting, this report uses data from individual programs rather than totals from networks. The only exception is the Association of Asian Confederation of Credit Unions, whose data was carefully reviewed to assure the absence of double-counting.

Finding 2:  Two-thirds of the 512 institutions submitting data this year report using a poverty measurement tool other than an estimate.  Of this group, 30 percent, 102 institutions, report using one of the two tools from the Microcredit Summit Campaignís Poverty Measurement Tool Kit (see below). The Microcredit Summit Campaign continues to face a central challenge if the Summitís goal of reaching 100 million poorest is to be achieved.  The Campaign must help an increasing number of practitioners identify and implement effective, inexpensive, and easy-to-use poverty measurements.

1. Established the Poverty Measurement Discussion Group in 1998 to help identify simple, reliable, cost-effective poverty measurements applicable in different regions of the world. By collecting and disseminating this information, the Campaign intends to support practitioners in adopting the most effective techniques for identifying and reaching the poorest families. The first, second, and third papers of the Poverty Measurement Discussion Group can be found on the Campaign website: http://www.microcreditsummit.org/discussion.htm

2. Created the Microcredit Summit Poverty Measurement Tool Kit (PMTK). The first two measurements included in the Summitís PMTK are the CASHPOR House Index, for use in rural Asia, and Participatory Wealth Ranking. While the Summit is not necessarily proposing that these measurements be used to screen out clients, those microcredit programs that wish to serve the poorest families and have a methodology that easily incorporates these tools may find them useful in assessing the poverty level of the clients they serve. These tools, and others to be identified for the tool kit, will be used to assess progress toward the Summitís goal of reaching 100 million of the worldís poorest families. In addition, the Summit will distribute a 30-minute training video in English and French, and eventually in Spanish, on using Participatory Wealth Ranking. Discussions are underway on creating a training video for using the CASHPOR House Index.

3. Commissioned a paper entitled, "Overcoming the Obstacles to Identifying the Poorest Families." This paper was discussed in plenary session at the Summitís Meeting of Councils held in June 1999 in Abidjan, Ivory Coast. The paper is currently being updated and will be discussed in plenary session at regional meetings in 2000 and 2001 in Africa, Asia, and Latin America. More than 3,000 copies of the paper have been circulated in English, French, and Spanish. It is also available in Arabic and Chinese and will soon be available in Russian. Copies of the paper can be found on the Campaign website:  http://www.microcreditsummit.org/papers/povertypaper.htm

4. Commissioned a paper entitled, "The Microcredit Summitís Challenge: Building Financially Self-Sufficient Institutions While Maintaining a Commitment to Reaching the Poorest Families." The paper challenges the conventional wisdom that suggests that these two priorities are mutually exclusive. It was circulated as above and is also available on the Summitís website ( http://www.microcreditsummit.org/papers/challengespaper.htm ).This paper is also being updated and will be discussed in plenary session at Regional meetings in 2000 and 2001 in Africa, Asia, and Latin America.

5. Organized day-long courses at the Summitís Meeting of Councils held in June 1999 in Abidjan, Ivory Coast on "Learning to Identify the Poorest Clients" and on "Learning to Build a Financially Self-Sufficient Institution While Maintaining a Commitment to Reaching the Poorest." These courses will be offered at regional meetings in 2000 and 2001 in Africa, Asia, and Latin America, as will training-of-leaders sessions on these topics.

6. Identified which poverty measurements practitioners are using to determine the number of poorest clients.   For the first time, the 2000 Action Plan grid asked what poverty measurement an institution used to determine the number of poorest clients. As mentioned above, the survey showed that two-thirds of the institutions reporting in 2000 are using some poverty measurement tool other than an estimate. Of this group, 30 percent are using one of the two tools from the Poverty Measurement Tool Kit.

7. Hired Summit staff based in Africa and Asia to bring the Campaignís message and best practices to every nation on those continents. The Campaignís efforts have expanded from the Secretariatís headquarters in Washington, DC to include meeting face-to-face with practitioners in the field. Our new Africa and Asia Organizers are charged with expanding the Summit Council of Practitioners, increasing the number and improving the quality of Action Plans submitted, and promoting the use of best practices with a special focus on reaching the poorest. The Campaign is committed to opening an office in Latin America as well.

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Looking Ahead

The Campaign survey shows growth in the number of clients being served by microcredit programs. The data also suggests an increase in the number of institutions now using poverty measurements to determine the number of poorest families being served. The Campaign will continue to push for the development of simple, cost-effective measurements for determining the poverty-level of microcredit clients through the Poverty Measurement Discussion Group and the Poverty Measurement Tool Kit.

The challenge of identifying and reaching the poorest must be addressed if tens of millions of women like Rajamma and Elvia are to have an opportunity to build a better life for themselves and their families. There are many reasons why the poorest are excluded from microcredit programs. They are least likely to step forward, so identifying and motivating them bring additional costs. The small size of their initial loans make it more difficult for an institution to become financially self-sufficient. But the goals set at the Microcredit Summit, at the Fourth World Conference on Women, and at the other global summits demand that we keep this as a priority.

The cornerstone of microcredit is the irrepressible desire and innate capacity of people to improve their lives, for themselves and especially for their children. Access to credit for self-employment and other financial and business services gives the poorest families the opportunity to triumph over the cruelties of extreme poverty.

The success of microcredit is best summarized by Noeleen Heyzer, Executive Director of the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM): "Microcredit is about much more than access to money. It is about women gaining control over the means to make a living. It is about women lifting themselves out of poverty and vulnerability. It is about women achieving economic and political empowerment within their homes, their villages, their countries."
 
 


The Microcredit Summit Campaign
440 First Street, N.W., Suite 460
Washington, DC 20001
USA
Tel: +1 202 637 9600
Fax: +1 202 637 3566
Email: info@microcreditsummit.org
http://www.microcreditsummit.org

The Microcredit Summit Campaign is a Project of RESULTS Educational Fund

Appendices
 Appendix 1 --Microcredit Institutions whose figures on poorest clients as of December 31, 1999 have been verified.
     Asia
     Africa
     Latin America and Caribbean
     Total
 Verifiers --Individuals who verified Appendix 1 data
 Appendix 2a -- The largest microcredit programs in Asia that have reported the number of poorest clients reached as of December 31, 1999
 Appendix 2b -- The largest microcredit programs in Africa that have reported the number of poorest clients reached as of December 31, 1999
 Appendix 2c -- The largest microcredit programs in Latin America and Caribbean that have reported the number of poorest clients reached as of December 31, 1999
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APPENDIX 1

Microcredit Institutions whose figures on poorest* clients as of December 31, 1999 have been verified.

For the first time, the Microcredit Summit Campaign has initiated a confirmation process with the Institutional Action Plans submitted in the year 2000. The fifty largest institutions in each of the following regions -- Africa, Asia and Latin America -- were asked to provide the Campaign with donor agencies, research institutions, networks and other institutions that could corroborate their data. In the letter addressed to the potential verifiers, the Secretariat defined the process as follows: "By confirm, we mean that you have visited the program, met the senior officials, reviewed aspects of the operation, they have provided you with numbers, and you believe that the institution and the numbers listed below are reliable and credible.  While we understand that no one can provide absolute certainty, we would appreciate your participation in this process."

It must be restated that the Summitís greatest challenge is bridging the gap between its commitment to reaching the poorest and the lack of a sufficient number of effective poverty measurements in use.  Therefore, every use of the term poorest within these appendixes should be read within the context of this dilemma.  It is anticipated that, with every successive report, the use of quality poverty measurements will increase, and therefore, so too will the quality of the data reported.

The data from 78 practitioner institutions was corroborated by at least one other organization.  These 78 institutions report reaching 9.3 million poorest at the end of 1999, or 67 percent of the total number of poorest clients reported.  80 percent of the 9.3 million poorest clients are women.

* "poorest" in developing countries refers to families who are in the bottom 50 percent of the population living below their country's poverty line.
  

Institution ASIA
Country
Total number of poorest clients as of 12/31/98 Total number of poorest clients as of 12/31/99 Total number of poorest women as of 12/31/98 Total number of poorest women as of 12/31/99
 Verifiers           (see next table)
Grameen Bank Bangladesh 2,360,000 2,360,000 2,242,000 2,242,000
7
Association of Asian Confederation of Credit Unions Thailand 1,502,644 1,528,245 871,534 916,947
4, 68
BRAC Bangladesh 1,040,000 1,360,000 1,040,000 1,360,000
51
Association for Social Advancement Bangladesh 707,842 975,886 661,195 906,403
43, 51
Proshika Manobik Unnayan Kendra Bangladesh 709,556 735,486 404,447 433,937
24, 32, 51
Agricultural Development Bank Nepal 163,289 168,869 40,822 43,906
47
Rangpur Dinajpur Rural Service Bangladesh 80,808 90,916 54,141 63,641
51
South Malabar Gramin Bank India 75,000 68,000 15,000 17,000
9
BURO, Tangail Bangladesh 71,479 67,357 70,764 66,683
24, 43, 57, 61
Amanah Ikhtiar Malaysia Malaysia 56,087 58,289 56,087 58,289
16, 63
Association of Cambodian Local Economic Development Agencies Cambodia 55,993 49,643 50,394 42,197
46, 59, 63
Thengamara Mohila Sabuj Sangha Bangladesh 45,000 47,000 45,000 47,000
51
Development of Human Action Foundation India 35,000 42,559 35,000 42,559
10, 45
Heed Bangladesh Bangladesh 29,262  34,154 23,410 27,323
51
Bangladesh Agricultural Working Peoples Association Bangladesh 20,475 23,877 18,837 21,967
34
Catholic Relief Services Cambodia Cambodia
13,731
22,003
13,731
22,003
13
Jagorani Chakra Bangladesh
19,008
21,332
18,058
20,479
26, 51, 56
Christian Service Society Bangladesh
18,382
18,705
15,625
15,899
72
Small Farmers Development Project Bangladesh
16,690
17,893
8,345
9,125
6
Centre for Self-Help DevelopmentCentre for Self-Help Development Nepal
13,453
17,707
 13,453
17,707
12, 34
Negros Women for Tomorrow Foundation Philippines
13,089
17,454
13,089
17,454
34
All India Association for Micro-Enterprise Development India
8,500
16,910
5,950
12,175
20, 49
Uttar Pradesh Bhumi Sudhar Nigam India
16,400
16,400
13,776
13,448
8
Surjamukhi Sangstha Bangladesh
10,500
15,000
8,400
13,500
60
FINCA Kyrgyzstan Kyrgyzstan
9,944
14,821
9,944
14,821
29
Heifer Project International China P.R. of China
1,248
14,560
499
5,824
18, 35 
Center for Agriculture and Rural Development Philippines
10,308
14,265
10,205
14,265
34, 73
Society for Helping and Awakening Rural Poor through Education India
7,367
14,155
7,367
14,155
71
Integrated Development Foundation Bangladesh
11,487
11,546
11,487
11,546
33, 34
Bharati Integrated Rural Development Society India
9,021
10,187
9,021
10,187
15
Centre for Advanced Research and Social Action Bangladesh
7,347
10,043
7,200
9,742
51
Mauchak Bangladesh
14,005
9,155
13,725
8,972
24
Manabik Shahajya Sangstha Bangladesh
3,228
3,349
3,228
3,349
11
Institution AFRICA
Country
Total number of poorest clients as of 12/31/98
Total number of poorest clients as of 12/31/99
Total number of poorest women as of 12/31/98
Total number of poorest women as of 12/31/99
 Verifiers           (see next table)
Dedebit Credit and Saving Institution (Relief Society of Tigray) Ethiopia
168,954
220,431
64,203
88,172
55
Nigerian Agricultural and Cooperative Bank Ltd. Nigeria
258,607
215,243
77,582
64,573
41
Amhara Credit and Saving Institution Ethiopia
94,004
141,947
47,002
70,974
50, 58
Malawi Rural Finance Company, Ltd. Malawi
105,500
105,100
40,090
39,938
40, 70
Kafo Jiginew Mali
67,871
82,898
67,871
82,898
68
Farmers Development Union Nigeria
33,250
38,676
31,255
36,742
19
Fédération des Caisses Populaires du Burkina Burkina Faso
30,806
35,000
29,266
31,500
3, 30
Poverty Alleviation Project Uganda
25,000
31,500
15,250
23,625
2, 53
Zakoura Foundation Morocco
16,055
30,000
16,055
30,000
25
Reseau des Caisses d'Epargne et de Crédit de Femmes de Dakar Senegal
12,000
25,000
11,160
23,250
43, 54
Oromia Credit & Savings Loan Ethiopia
9,165
22,995
1,833
5,749
36
FINCA, Uganda Uganda
16,400
18,634
16,400
18,634
29
FINCA, Malawi Malawi
9,106
15,603
9,106
15,603
29
Uganda Women's Finance Trust Uganda
7,200
11,200
7,200
11,200
53
CBDIBA Benin
7,205
9,444
4,683
6,327
23, 52
Lift Above Poverty Organization Nigeria
7,195
9,080
6,979
8,808
19, 34
Kenya Women Finance Trust Kenya
5,686
9,060
5,686
9,060
69
Reseau des Caisses Rurales d'Epargne et Crédit du Walo Senegal
7,837
8,468
6,276
6,860
28
Zambuko Trust Zimbabwe
5,168
5,300
4,289
4,399
66
FINCA, Tanzania Tanzania
757
3,632
757
3,632
29
Initiative pour le Dévéloppement Communautaire Integré D.R. of Congo
1,568
1,778
1,490
1,689
21
Caritas, Thies Senegal
897
1,307
897
1,307
14
Institution Latin America and Caribbean
Country
Total number of poorest clients as of 12/31/98
Total number of poorest clients as of 12/31/99
Total number of poorest women as of 12/31/98
Total number of poorest women as of 12/31/99
 Verifiers
(see next table)
Asociación Programa Compartamos Mexico
35,595
43,951
35,595
43,511
1
Cooperativa Emprender Colombia
40,232
41,000
25,748
27,060
1
Fondo Ecuatoriano Populorum Progressio Ecuador
32,500
36,200
13,650
18,100
27
Fundación para la Promoción y Desarrollo Bolivia
31,200
25,146
20,280
14,333
1
Banco Solidario S. A. Bolivia
20,729
22,110
15,567
15,234
1
FINCA, Honduras Honduras
15,175
21,103
14,568
20,259
29
FINCA, El Salvador El Salvador
16,302
18,403
14,183
15,643
29
MIBANCO, Banco de la Microempresa S.A. Peru
16,800
18,000
10,416
11,160
1
Asociación Benefica PRISMA Peru
942
16,745
414
8,707
22, 37, 65
Pro Mujer - Bolivia Bolivia
13,335
15,135
12,668
14,378
65
FINCA, Nicaragua Nicaragua
884
13,701
884
13,701
29
Banco Solidario S. A. Ecuador
9,620
10,354
5,156
6,057
17
ACODEP Nicaragua
6,000
9,000
4,500
6,390
38
FENAPE Brazil
6,222
8,125
3,173
4,144
1
FINCA, Ecuador Ecuador
4,835
7,746
4,835
7,746
29
FINCA, Mexico Mexico
3,650
6,883
3,322
6,470
29
FINCA, Peru Peru 
5,166
6,648
5,063
6,449
29
Cooperativa Jesús Nazareno Ltda. Bolivia
6,475
6,580
4,768
4,847
5
World Relief Honduras Honduras
5,000
6,500
5,000
6,500
39, 72
Fundación Mario Santo Domingo Colombia
5,800
6,396
4,640
5,373
1
Organización de Desarrollo Empresarial Feminino Honduras
6,210
6,210
5,403
4,968
31, 39, 42
FAMA Nicaragua
6,117
6,087
3,487
3,226
1
GENESIS Empresarial Guatemala
5,200
4,300
1,560
1,505
1
TOTAL  
8,340,363
9,274,385
6,491,944
7,375,203
 
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Verifiers
Individuals who have verified practitioner data found in Appendix 1. Organizations are listed for identification purposes only.

 
No. Name Organization Country
1
Ms. Robin Ratcliffe ACCION International USA
2
Mr. Mwalimu Musheshe, Jr. Association of Micro-entreprises Finance Institutions (AMFIU) Uganda
3
Ms. Mia Adams Appui au Développement Autonome Luxemburg
4
Mr. Benjamin Quiñones, Jr. Asian and Pacific Development Centre Malaysia
5
Mr. Alfredo Arana Ruck ASOFIN Bolivia
6
Dr. Mihir Kumar Roy Bangladesh Academy for Rural Development (BARD) Bangladesh
7
Mr. Abu Ahmed Abdullah Bangladesh Institute of Development Studies (BIDS) Bangladesh
8
Mr. Kishanjit Basu Bankers Institute of Rural Development (BIRD) India
9
Mr. P. Satish Bankers Institute of Rural Development (BIRD) India
10
Mr. Vijay Mahajan BASIX India
11
Mr. Carlos P. Ani CARE/SEAD Bangladesh Bangladesh
12
Ms. Helen Todd CASHPOR Services Malaysia
13
Mr. Patrick McAllister Catholic Relief Services USA
14
Mr. Victor Luboyeski Catholic Relief Services Senegal
15
Mr. Pratul Ahuja Centre for Environmental Planning and Technology (CEPT) India
16
Mr. Abdul Basari Mohd Centre for Policy Research Malaysia
17
Mr. Juan Carlos Gómez Vázquez Centro ACCION Microempresa Ecuador
18
Rev. Gene R. Preston Community Church Hong Kong Hong Kong
19
Mr. Francis Osayomwanbor Community Development and Microfinance Roundtable Nigeria
20
Rev. P. Y. Singh Community Development Society (CDS) India
21
Mr. Florimond Cyadimba Conseil Provincial des ONG de Développement de Kinshasa D.R. of Congo
22
Mr. Francisco Dumler Cuya Consorcio de Organizaciones de Promoción al Desarrollo (COPEME) Peru
23
Mr. Mathieu Soglonou Consortium Alafia Benin
24
Mr. Khandker Zakir Hossain Credit and Development Forum (CDF) Bangladesh
25
Mr. Fouzi Mourji DIS Morocco
26
Mr. Peter Amacher Enfants du Monde Bangladesh
27
Mr. Detlef Leitner EZE Germany
28
Mr. Masse Gning Fédération des ONG du Sénégal Senegal
29
Mr. Zach Gast FINCA International Inc. USA
30
Mr. Didier Thys Freedom From Hunger USA
31
Mr. Anibal Montoya Fundación José María Covelo Honduras
32
Mr. Ulrich Wehnert Germany Agency for Technical Cooperation (GTZ) Germany
33
Mr. Dipal Chandra Barua Grameen Bank Bangladesh
34
Prof. H.I. Latifee Grameen Trust Bangladesh
35
Mr. Robert Pelant Heifer Project International USA
36
Mr. Joshua Kaaria INAFI African Regional Secretariat Kenya
37
Mr. Armando Pillado-Matheu Iniciativa Microfinanzas 
(Convenio ADEX-USAID/MSP)
Peru
38
Dr. Manfred Zeller Institut for Rural Development Germany
39
Ms. Olga Patricia Falck InterAmerican Development Bank (BID) Honduras
40
Mr. Aliou Diagne International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) USA
41
Mr. Hans Dieter Seibel International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) Italy
42
Mr. Jerry Hildebrand Katalysis Partnership USA
43
Ms. Soukeyna Ndiaye Ba Microfin Afrique Senegal
44
Mr. Graham A. N. Wright MicroSave-Africa Uganda
45
Dr. Prakash Bakshi National Bank for Agricultural and Rural Development India
46
Mr. Son Koun Thor National Bank of Cambodia Cambodia
47
Mr. Ganesh Kumar Shresther Nepal Rastra Bank Nepal
48
Mr. Peter Hu NOVID The Netherlands
49
Mr. Leigh Coleman Opportunity International Network Australia
50
Ms. Leslie F. Mitchell PACT Ethiopia
51
Mr. Mohammad Fazlul Kader Palli Karma-Sahayak Foundation (PKSF) Bangladesh
52
Mr. Luc Vandeweerd PASMEC Senegal
53
Ms. Evelyn J. Stark PRESTO Center for Microfinance Uganda
54
Mr. Hamet Ndour REMIX Senegal
55
Mr. Dirk Van Esbroeck South Research Belgium
56
Mr. Peter Meienberger Stiftung Kinderdorf Pestalozzi (SKIP) Switzerland
57
Mr. Jean-Christophe Favre Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation - SDC, Country Office Bangladesh
58
Mr. Giovanie Biha-K  UNDP Country Office Ethiopia
59
Mr. Kun Vee Lee UNDP Country Office Cambodia
60
Mr. Ladislaus Byenkya-Abwooli UNDP Country Office Bangladesh
61
Mr. Henry R. Jackelen UNDP Headquarters USA
62
Mr. Chamhuri Siwar Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia Malaysia
63
Mr. Dennis J. Cengel USAID Country Office Cambodia
64
Mr. Jaime Giesecke Sara-Lafosse USAID Country Office Peru
65
Ms. Gabriela Santa Cruz USAID Country Office Bolivia
66
Mr. Tichaona Mushayandebvu USAID Country Office Zimbabwe
67
Ms. Zahia Lolila-Ramin USAID Mali, Country Office / Weidemann Associates Inc. Mali
68
Mr. Dave Grace WOCCU USA
69
Ms. Wanjiku Kibui Women's World Banking USA
70
Mr. Saadat Siddiqi World Bank USA
71
Ms. Joyita Mukherjee World Bank - CGAP USA
72
Mr. Ken Graber World Relief USA
73
Ms. Jennifer Meehan CASHPOR Services Malaysia

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Appendix 2a
The largest microcredit programs in Asia that have reported the number of poorest clients reached as of December 31, 1999

Please be aware that the data in Appendix 2a is self-reported and has not been corroborated in every case.  The data for only 33 of the following 50 institutions has been verified.  See  Appendix 1  for the list of institutions whose data has been verified and an explanation of the verification process.
 
 
Institution Country
Total number of poorest clients in 1999
Grameen Bank Bangladesh
2,360,000
Association of Asian Confederation of Credit Unions Thailand
1,528,245
BRAC Bangladesh
1,360,000
Association for Social Advancement Bangladesh
975,886
Proshika Manobik Unnayan Kendra Bangladesh
735,486
Vietnam Bank for the Poor Vietnam
575,000
Agricultural Development Bank Nepal
168,869
Caritas, Bangladesh Bangladesh
160,080
Swanirvar Bangladesh Bangladesh
132,245
Sarvodaya Economic Enterprises Development Services Sri Lanka
108,510
Rangpur Dinajpur Rural Service Bangladesh
90,916
South Malabar Gramin Bank India
68,000
BURO, Tangail Bangladesh
67,357
China International Centre for Technical & Economic Exchanges P.R. of China
61,600
Amanah Ikhtiar Malaysia Malaysia
58,289
Christian Children's Fund India National Office India
50,000
Association of Cambodian Local Economic Development Agencies Cambodia
49,643
Thengamara Mohila Sabuj Sangha Bangladesh
47,000
Shakti Foundation for Disadvantaged Women Bangladesh
45,323
Development of Human Action Foundation India
42,559
Heed Bangladesh Bangladesh
34,154
Association for Rural Development of Poor Areas in Sichuan P.R. of China
31,020
Community Development Center Bangladesh
28,817
Bangladesh Agricultural Working Peoples Association Bangladesh
23,877
Catholic Relief Services Cambodia Cambodia
22,003
UDDIPAN Bangladesh
21,870
Jagorani Chakra Bangladesh
21,332
Resource Integration Centre Bangladesh
20,915
Christian Service Society Bangladesh
18,705
Institute for Self Management India
18,458
Small Farmers Development Project Bangladesh
17,893
Centre for Self-Help Development Nepal
17,707
People's Multipurpose Development Society India
17,500
Negros Women for Tomorrow Foundation, Inc. Philippines
17,454
All India Association for Micro-Enterprise Development India
16,910
Uttar Pradesh Bhumi Sudhar Nigam India
16,400
ACTIONAID (Bangladesh) Bangladesh
15,600
Nirdhan Nepal
15,382
Surjamukhi Sangstha Bangladesh
15,000
FINCA Kyrgyzstan Kyrgyzstan
14,821
Rashtriya Gramin Vikas Nidhi India
14,751
Heifer Project International China P.R. of China
14,560
Center for Agriculture and Rural Development Philippines
14,265
Society for Helping and Awakening Rural Poor through Education India
14,155
Christian Children's Fund, Inc. Thailand Thailand
13,875
Kabalikat Para Sa Maunlad Na Buhay, Inc. Philippines
13,765
Credit Union Promotion Centre Malaysia
13,215
TSPI Development Organization Philippines
12,526
Save the Children Fund UK - Vietnam Vietnam
12,320
Integrated Development Foundation Bangladesh
11,546
TOTAL  
9,225,804

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Appendix 2b
The largest microcredit programs in Africa that have reported the number of poorest clients reached as of December 31, 1999

Please be aware that the data in Appendix 2b is self-reported and has not been corroborated in every case.  The data for only 22 of the following 50 institutions has been verified.  See Appendix 1 for the list of institutions whose data has been verified and an explanation of the verification process.
 
Institution Country
Total number of poorest clients in 1999
Dedebit Credit and Saving Institution (Relief Society of Tigray) Ethiopia
220,431
Nigerian Agricultural and Cooperative Bank Ltd. Nigeria
215,243
People's Bank of Nigeria Nigeria
192,100
Country Women's Association of Nigeria Nigeria
166,500
Amhara Credit and Saving Institution Ethiopia
141,947
Malawi Rural Finance Company, Ltd. Malawi
105,100
Kafo Jiginew Mali
82,898
Alternative Finance Link for Development Nigeria
52,000
Alliance de Credit et d'Epargne Pour la Production Senegal
40,841
Farmers Development Union Nigeria
38,676
Omo Micro-finance Share Company Ethiopia
37,004
Federation des Caisses Populaires du Burkina Burkina Faso
35,000
PRIDE Tanzania Tanzania
31,500
Poverty Alleviation Project Uganda
31,500
Zakoura Foundation Morocco
30,000
Union des Banques Populaires du Rwanda Rwanda
28,256
GIE Guinedou Service d'Appui aux CVECB Pays Dogon Mali
28,200
PAMECAS Senegal
25,016
Reseau des Caisses d'Epargne et Credit Senegal
25,000
Fonds de Solidarite Nationale Tunisia
24,300
Oromia Credit & Savings Loan Ethiopia
22,995
Small Enterprise Development Organization of Malawi Malawi
18,919
FINCA, Uganda Uganda
18,634
Credit Communautaire Africa Cameroon
17,000
Organisation d'Interet Comunautaire pour le Developpement du Congo D.R. of Congo
16,830
Nsoatreman Rural Bank Ltd Ghana
16,241
Organisation pour la Promotion des Initiatives Communautaires de Base en Afrique Congo
16,028
National Association of Business Women Malawi
16,000
FINCA, Malawi Malawi
15,603
PRIDE Africa, Uganda Uganda
14,353
Calmeadow/Microstart-Benin Benin
14,000
Nyesigiso, Union des Caisses D'Epargne et de Credit Mali
13,432
Fondation Congo Assistance Congo
12,960
Action d'Appui aux Veuves, Orphelins, et Maraichers Congo
12,814
Freedom from Hunger Ghana Ghana
12,500
Women's Health Economic Development Association Nigeria
12,500
Uganda Women's Finance Trust Uganda
11,200
DEC Finance Trust for Development Nigeria
10,290
CBDIBA Benin
9,444
Lift Above Poverty Organization Nigeria
9,080
Kenya Women Finance Trust Kenya
9,060
Gambia Rural Development Agency The Gambia
9,000
Mouvement pour l'Encadrement des Femmes Sans Voix a la Base Congo
8,578
Reseau des caisses Rurales d'E. Credit du Walo Senegal
8,468
Conseil National Pour la Promotion et le Developpement des Caisses Populaires Senegal
8,000
Sinapi Aba Trust Ghana
7,790
African Women Economic Development Nigeria
7,280
Nissi Finance Zimbabwe
6,889
Pride/Finance Guinea
6,832
Wisdom Micr-financing Institution Ethiopia
6,728
TOTAL  
1,920,960

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Appendix 2c
The largest microcredit programs in Latin America and Caribbean that have reported the number of poorest clients reached as of December 31, 1999

Please be aware that the data in Appendix 2c is self-reported and has not been corroborated in every case.  The data for only 23 of the following 43 institutions has been verified.  See Appendix 1 for the list of institutions whose data has been verified and an explanation of the verification process.
 
 
Institution Country
Total number of poorest clients in 1999
Asociacion Programa Compartamos Mexico
43,951
Cooperativa Emprender Colombia
41,000
Fondo Ecuatoriano Populorum Progressio Ecuador
36,200
Fundacion para la Promocion y Desarrollo Bolivia
25,146
Banco Solidario S. A.  Bolivia
22,110
FINCA, Honduras Honduras
21,103
FINCA, El Salvador El Salvador
18,403
MIBANCO, Banco de la Microempresa S.A. Peru
18,000
Asociación Benefica PRISMA Peru
16,745
Pro Mujer - Bolivia Bolivia
15,135
Centro de Apoyo a la Microempresa El Salvador
14,722
FINCA, Nicaragua Nicaragua
13,701
Microcredito Santa Fe de Guanajuato Mexico
11,629
Banco Solidario S. A. Ecuador
10,354
ACODEP Nicaragua
9,000
Freedom from Hunger / CRECER Bolivia
8,503
FENAPE Brazil
8,125
FINCA, Ecuador Ecuador
7,746
FINCA, Mexico Mexico
6,883
FINCA, Peru Peru
6,648
Cooperativa  Jesus Nazareno Ltda. Bolivia
6,580
World Relief Honduras Honduras
6,500
Fundación para el Desarrollo Integral de Programas Socioeconómicos Guatemala
6,500
Fundación Mario Santo Domingo Colombia
6,396
Organización de Desarrollo Empresarial Feminino Honduras
6,210
FAMA Nicaragua
6,087
Fundación WWB Colombia, Cali Colombia
5,600
Pro Mujer - Nicaragua Nicaragua
5,058
GENESIS Empresarial Guatemala
4,300
Fundación Ecuatoriana de Desarrollo Ecuador
3,981
Fundacion Mundo Mujer Colombia
3,800
Movimiento Manuela Ramos Peru
3,493
ADMIC Nacional, AC Mexico
2,962
Asociacion Slavadorena Pro-Salud Rural El Salvador
2,376
BANCOADEMI Dominican Republic
2,100
Emprendamos Juntos A.C. Mexico
2,000
Fundacion de Desarrollo Campesino Nicaragua
1,991
FUCAC Uruguay
1,961
Bandesarrollo Microempresas S.A./ Banco del Desarrollo Chile
1,865
Asociacion para el Desarollo Rural Integrado Costa Rica
1,200
ADEPH Guatemala
1,200
Cooperativa de Ahorro y Credito Maquita Cushunchic Ltda. Ecuador
1,199
FONDECAP Peru
1,198
TOTAL  
439,661

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[1] For the purpose of this report, the 1997 Microcredit Summit, and the Summitís nine-year fulfillment campaign, any reference to microcredit should be understood to refer to programs that provide credit for self-employment, and other financial and business services (including savings and technical assistance) to very poor persons.

[2] The Microcredit Summit Campaign defines "poorest" as the bottom half of those living below their nationís poverty line. The Summitís greatest challenge, however, is bridging the gap between its commitment to reaching the poorest and the lack of a sufficient number of effective poverty measurements in use. Therefore, every mention of the term poorest within this report should be read within the context of this dilemma. It is anticipated that, with every successive report, the use of quality poverty measurements will increase, and therefore, so too will the quality of the data reported.

[3] The 1998 survey included 618 microcredit institutions who reported reaching 7.6 million poorest clients as of December 31, 1997. The newest survey includes 1,065 institutions reaching 13.8 million poorest families, but most of the largest institutions were already reporting to the Campaign in 1998.

[4] Helen Todd, Women at the Center: Grameen Bank Borrowers After One Decade, (Colorado: Westview Press, 1996), pp. 183-185; Shahidur R. Khandker, Fighting Poverty With Microcredit: Experience in Bangladesh (New York: Oxford University Press, 1998), p.49.

[5]  Barbara Mknelly and Karen Lipold. 1998. Practitioner-Led Impact Assessment: A Test in Mali. AIMS Paper. Washington, D.C.: Freedom From Hunger and Management Systems International; Elaine Edgecomb and Carter Garber. 1998.Practitioner-Led Impact Assessment: A Test in Honduras. AIMS Paper. Washington, D.C.: The Small Enterprise Education and Promotion Network.

[6] In the letter addressed to the potential verifiers, the Secretariat defined the process as follows: "By confirm, we mean that you have visited the program, met the senior officials, reviewed aspects of the operation, they have provided you with numbers, and you believe that the institution and the numbers provided [to the Microcredit Summit Campaign] are reliable and credible. While we understand that no one can provide absolute certainty, we would appreciate your participation in this process." Please see Appendix 1 for the data from the 78 institutions whose numbers were verified.