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Our model is similar to that of several poverty alleviating/micro lending organizations including:
The Adelante Foundation (Honduras)
They loan exclusively to women (we loan to men and women).
Lending to men can also alleviate the suffering of women and children.
Individuals start out in group loans and then gradually earn access to more capital. This method is GREAT, we just wanted a speedier process.
Can’t say enough good things. We’d like to incorporate more of their framework as we grow.
They’re a valuable organization BUT if you read the fine print, borrowers are paying 20+% interest. We set our borrowers up for success by making our loans as affordable as possible.
Books I’ve Read on the Topic
Radiant Mormonism- Using our Faith in Christ to Power World Changing Service by Warner Woodworth
Must read for members of my faith. Others could enjoy and learn as well. Warner Woodworth has been involved in several projects all over the world including Honduras and has been instrumental in helping MILLIONS of people.
Toxic Charity- How Churches and Charities Hurt Those They Help (and How to Reverse it) by Robert D Lupton
This book is a must read for anyone whose has ever wanted to help someone (everyone). It changed our thinking and understanding about our project and lead us to make changes. Highly recommend!
When Helping Hurts-How to Alleviate Poverty without Hurting the Poor and Yourself by Steve Corbett & Brian Fikkert
Super relevant and important book. My only criticism is that is sees Christianity as the end all goal or tool for alleviating poverty. Still highly recommend.
21 Habits of Highly Broke People and How Poor People Think both by Dipo Adesino
If you want to help people out of poverty, you’ve first got to understand how they got there and why they haven’t left. Although many outside factors contribute to Hondurans’ poverty (destructive Hurricanes etc) everyone must take personal responsibility for their financial situation. You might be surprised to see that you have some of these habits or thought patterns.
Uplift and Empower - A Guide to Understanding Extreme Poverty and Poverty Alleviation by Danielle Hawa Tarigha
Came across this book on Instagram. Learned new things. Something I always like to mention is that while extreme poverty is considered living on $1.90 a day, even if you’re living on closer to $5-10 a day, you’re life is still extremely difficult. Honduras is a country of extremes- extreme violence, extreme weather, and extreme poverty. The good news is that poverty alleviation doesn’t have to use extreme methods or extreme funding.
“…shift of focus from eradicating poverty to creating prosperity for all individuals, high and low income. Prosperity occurs when more people are able to improve their general well-being. Rather than focus solely on what makes people poor, we should aim to understand what helps people become wealthy, not just earn more money: creating and exchanging goods and services with people.”
The Abundance Mentality-Conquering Scarcity to Find the Key to Your Dreams by David Carter
Contrary to how most define poverty, poverty is less about lacking material things and more of a mindset. When individuals can switch from a poverty mindset to a growth or abundant mindset, their circumstances will improve.
Lead with Love- 10 Principles Ever Leader Needs to Maximize Potential and Achieve Peak Performance by Gerald M Czarnecki
I came across this book while looking for the website of a charity with the same name. I was intrigued because most leadership books don’t talk about loving your employees and co workers. Love in this context meaning- treating others with kindness. Such a simple concept that many fail to do. The charity Lead with Love was founded by the family of a young woman who died in a tragic car crash. The day before she died she told her mom she wanted to help send women in developing countries to beauty school. We are looking for opportunities to partner with them in Honduras.
Built to last-Successful Habits of Visionary Companies by Jim Collins
We want our project to still be standing long after we’re gone and hope after reading this we are starting down the right track. We know that we will need to be flexible and experiment. Being willing to abandon failing processes that you’ve worked hard to develop can be challenging but rewarding.
Forces for Good-The Six Practices of High-Impact Nonprofits
Pure gold. One thing I learned from this book is the importance of collaboration with other organizations. We need to identify who our colleagues are and how to work together.
Other books waiting to read on my night stand
The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind
It’s also a Netflix movie- “A 13 year old boy is thrown out of the school he loves when his family can no longer afford the fees. He sneaks into the library and learns how to build a windmill to save his village from a famine.”
Building Communities from the Inside Out - A Path Toward Mobilizing a Community’s Assests by John P Kretzman and John L McKnight
They created a model for community development of identifying assets rather than focusing on problems. We plan to do this type of assessment when we visit Honduras this summer.
The Most Good You Can Do by Peter Singer
I’ll update this list as I continue learning.