Does anti-poverty work actually … work?

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Photo credit: Giorgia Bonaga & Shamimur Rahman
The following blog post is re-posted with permission. Read the original article on Next Billion, “NexThought Monday – Does Anti-Poverty Work Actually … Work?: Three questions every ‘pro-poor’ group needs to ask themselves.”


>>Authored by Chris Dunford and Carmen Velasco

This month, the United Nations will celebrate achievement of Millennium Development Goal No. 1. The number of people living in extreme poverty has fallen by more than half, from 1.9 billion in 1990 to 836 million in 2015. How did this happen? Is it because of targeted anti-poverty programs, or is it due to broad-based economic growth, especially in China and India? If economic growth is the main cause, as it seems to be, further progress may be doubtful. Economic growth alone is unlikely to reach the residual hundreds of millions still living in extreme poverty.

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The Truelift Indicators are now available in the SPI4

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CERISE and SPTF have created, with the support of their membership, the SPI4, a universal social performance assessment tool that integrates emerging industry social performance standards. MFIs can use the SPI4 as a self-assessment tool, or with the assistance of someone trained in the SPI. This blog post was originally published by Truelift on July, 29 2015.

The Truelift Indicators Tool has been streamlined and incorporated into the SPI4 as the pro-poor module. The SPI4 is a universal social performance assessment tool that integrates emerging industry social performance standards (Read more about the SPI4).

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#tbt: The Need for Pricing Transparency in Microfinance

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#ThrowbackThursday comes from the 2009 State of the Campaign Report EspañolFrançais Continue reading

Truelift’s progress and what the future holds

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A message from the Truelift Steering Committee EspañolFrançais Continue reading

From Intent to Action: Resources to Pursue Responsible Inclusive Finance

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Dina Pons of Incofin IM, the moderator of the workshop, “Responsible, client-centric practices at every level, and demonstrated commitment to fulfilling its mission,” started the presentation with the following description of Responsible Inclusive Finance:

Every institution along the value chain of “responsible inclusive finance” – whether socially or financially motivated – employs responsible, client-centric practices at every level of its business and demonstrates commitment to fulfilling its mission.

Read the summary of proceedings for this workshop.

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A Commitment to the Future

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The work that took place is a moment in history when the industry has rededicated itself to the mission of using microfinance to help end poverty.EspañolFrançais Continue reading

Solar loans for poor people in Tanzania and Uganda

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Originally posted on Truelift:
At this year’s Convergences Global Forum, Tujijenge Afrika executive director, Felistas Coutinho, discussed their solar loan projects in Tanzania and Uganda. Since 2006, Coutinho has been developing and refining the loan programs, with 1,577 clients served in…

Strategic Partnership To Deliver Social Performance Assessments

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Learn about the strategic partnership to help MFIs track and compare social performance. EspañolFrançais Continue reading

Creating a Community of Partnerships to End Poverty

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If your vision is to create a better world, you have to see poverty as a social problem. EspañolFrançais Continue reading

Outreach to the poorest: by Lisa Kuhn Fraioli

Are MFI staff biased against the physical manifestations of severe poverty? Lisa Kuhn Fraioli, in this Truelift blog post, describes an exercise she took MFI staff through in order to illuminate how “the poorest members of society can become invisible to us.”

“Many of the people who were chosen based on their profiles were not chosen based on their pictures, revealing an apparent disconnect between the intent to serve poorer clients and the ability to identify them visually.” Read more!

Truelift

In the article below, Lisa Kuhn Fraioli recounts some experiences in the field and her reflections on pro-poor outreach:

Sometimes seeing is the first obstacle
to better outreach to the poorest.

In my work with microfinance organizations around the world, I have noticed that efforts to serve more poor people can stumble on the very first step: seeing them. 

One experience in particular stands out from my experience with a very well-meaning MFI whose staff claimed that there were not poorer clients or women to whom they could lend. In order to shed some light, I went out and interviewed people whom I thought were potential clients who were poorer than those currently served and took their pictures.  I also interviewed and photographed some people at a slightly higher economic level that I thought resembled the people they were currently serving.

photosAt a staff meeting, I posted pictures around the room and…

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Call for Tools! Tracking progress of poor people

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One of the 2 goals of the Microcredit Summit Campaign, as endorsed by delegates at our 2006 Global Microcredit Summit in Halifax, is for the global microfinance community, through appropriate products and services and establishing effective partnerships, to help 100 million families lift themselves out of severe poverty. In order to measure progress toward that goal, practitioners must track the progress of their clients and other stakeholders have a role to support that process.

If Truelift’s call for tools applies to you–your organization is tracking the progress of people living in poverty–please visit the post on Truelift to learn more.

Truelift

Do you track progress of people living in poverty?
Know someone who does?
We need your input!

Choose one of the TWO ways below to submit your tool for Tracking Progress of People Living in Poverty – email or the form below. Once you have submitted we will follow-up with you as soon possible. To learn more about tracking progress of poor people, click here.

tools

1) Send us an email telling us a little about:

  • You and your organization
  • What tool are you using to track progress of people living in poverty?
  • What is your tracking process?
  • What outcomes have you seen evidence of?
  • What have you learned from this process?

Send to info[at]truelift.org

OR

2) Complete the form below telling us a little about the ways you track progress of people living in poverty:

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Video Recording of “Matching Products & Preferences” Webinar

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Here is the promised video recording of the Bankers without Borders webinar from Friday, June 21. Continue reading

What we learned from the “Matching Products & Preferences” Webinar

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A recap of last Friday’s Bankers without Borders webinar on product development, featuring the Microcredit Summit Campaign, Truelift, and Microfinance Opportunities. Español Français Continue reading

What about Non-Financial Services? (reblogged from Truelift)

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Clearly, the Microcredit Summit Campaign advocates for providing non-financial services such as health education and such along side credit, savings, and insurance. We think it is a key ingredient in meeting the needs and preference of clients. With our Financing Healthier Lives project, our partner MFIs are providing those very educational interventions that help women change behaviors at home, thus eliminating diarrhea and improving the health of their family.

You can read about our work here:  

Truelift

Lively discussion
During the Technical Committee (TC) meetings leading up to the final methodology for Truelift Assessment and the Pro-Poor Principles, there was a great deal of discussion about non-financial services and whether or not they are essential to pro-poor microfinance. Initially, the TC explored a full dimension of the methodology dedicated to assessing non-financial services when undergoing Truelift Assessment. As these discussions evolved, some broader questions rose to the fore, including the pro-poor intent and strategy behind services provided, and the degree of commitment to pro-poor services in terms of quality, coverage, and duration.

Appropriate non-financial services
The result of the Technical Committee (TC) deliberations ultimately yielded Pro-Poor Principle #2: Services that Meet the Needs of People Living in Poverty. “Services” is perhaps an oversimplification as we include here products, delivery channels, and any other modifications that an MFI has implemented in favor of its poor clients. The indicators in…

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