the mif blog

Stories of inspiring entrepreneurs and organizations, discussion and commentary of new trends in private sector development, and the latest events and publications.

Women craft a better life with Wakami Villages

Por Jessica Olivan Tellez

Reality in Guatemala, as in many other countries in the region, is hard. Poverty levels in rural areas are very high, which combines with a lack of sustainable income to become the recipe for and main cause of a reduced quality of life. When the gender ingredient is added to this daunting formula it becomes explosive, and for indigenous women things are complicated even further. But it does not need to remain so. A trio of Guatemalan women has been working for almost 20 years so that this vicious circle becomes a virtuous one.


Love, rivalry, drama... and how to make a budget? Telenovelas as a source of financial education

Por SANDRA DARVILLE


Will Vicky be able to make more money now that her husband has left his job? Will Miriam be able to fulfill her dream of owning her own house? What about Vicky’s pregnant teenage sister? How will a new baby affect the household? And who, after all, is the “man” in Cambodia?  These and other questions captivated a full house at the Foromic panel on using non-traditional media techniques for training. Non-traditional it was, with discussions of telenovelas (soap operas) and reality TV shows, HIV-AIDS, financial literacy and savings accounts, child trafficking and women’s and men’s household roles. This panel proved how financial, academic, and health institutions are using soaps for more than daytime dithering. In fact, some of the LAC region’s leading microfinance organizations are proving that combining such seemingly frivolous fare with important messages can be an effective and sustainable vehicle for providing training and achieving behavioral changes. 

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