Solar loans for poor people in Tanzania and Uganda

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Social entrepreneurs in Tanzania and Uganda are innovating in the field of green energy. Read this blog post from Truelift to learn about Tujijenge Afrika, who spoke about their solar loan projects at the Convergences Global Forum last week. (And see this interview with Michaël Knaute, special advisor & board member of Convergences, that we posted last week).

2013Summit-banner_nologosAt the 2013 Partnerships against Poverty Summit that we’re co-hosting in just 2 weeks, we will be offering a workshop called “Microfinance Goes Green: Energy Inclusion to Help Alleviate Poverty.” Sebastian Groh (MicroEnergy International, MEI) is organizing this workshop, and it will include speakers Allan Sicat (MCPI), Francesca Randazzo (ADA), Wonjin Seol (ADB), Minh Cuong Le Quan (Prakti Design), and Camilla Hall (special advisor to Dr. Ashok Khosla).

Learn more about the “Going Green” workshop here:

Register for the 2013 Summit today!

Volunteer for a FREE registration to the Summit! We understand that the Summit fees can be costly. We hope to make the opportunity to attend as widely available as possible, so we are re-opening the volunteer application process. You can save as much as $650 on your registration fee by applying to be a volunteer at the Summit.

If you are interested in volunteering, please fill out this online form today!


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 the first year alone.

These projects demonstrate a successful model for product development that meets the needs of poor people through partnership and perseverance. Below are some of highlights, including challenges faced and lessons learned, as presented by Coutinho at the Global Forum.

The need:
Why are solar lanterns needed in Tanzania and Uganda? Especially in in rural areas, some benefits of solar lanterns for people living poverty are listed below:

  • Increased productivity due to availability of light in the evening
  • Children are able to study in the evenings
  • Solar lanterns offer clean, healthier light than other alternatives
  • Less expensive than other alternatives by at least 25%
  • Access to electricity fills the phone…

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Why this will be the most fun Summit ever!

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By Allan Robert I. Sicat, Executive Director, Microfinance Council of the Philippines, Inc.

Allan Robert I. Sicat
Executive Director

Microfinance Council of the Philippines, Inc.

The Philippines takes pride in places and activities that are more fun to go to and do. The 2013 Partnerships against Poverty Summit must be more fun in the Philippines as well!

On October 9 – 11, 2013, the Microfinance Council of the Philippines, Inc. and the Microcredit Summit Campaign will bring together government regulators, microfinance practitioners, product design experts, providers of support services, and advocates for the 2013 Partnerships against Poverty Summit at the Philippine International Convention Center in Manila, Philippines.

MCPI invites the stakeholders and advocates of the microfinance industry in the country to participate and highlight the success of partnerships in microfinance in the Philippines to the global community.

In the Philippines, the Farmer’s Entrepreneurship Program (FEP, read about itview a PPT), a project implemented in partnership by the National Livelihood Development Corporation (NLDC), Jollibee Group Foundation (JGF), and the Catholic Relief Services (CRS) is being implemented by Luzon and Mindanao involving local government units and microfinance institutions.

FEP has shown that with the right agro-enterprise training and guidance, small farmers can act collectively and meet the volume, quality, and delivery requirements of companies.

We look forward to welcoming counterparts from other nations who bring with them their own inspiring stories of public-private partnerships. Together, let us examine what makes them thrive. Let us discover innovations that can be replicated in our respective communities. The number of possibilities is as many and varied as the participants. What better place to advance our goals than at the 2013 Microcredit Summit?

On top of the knowledge-sharing experience, varied, too, are the sights that our 7,107 islands offer. When you come to the Philippines, be prepared to explore natural and historical landmarks such as…

…the Puerto Princesa underground river, one of the New 7 Wonders of Nature

…the world-renowned white sand beaches of Boracay

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White Beach, Boracay Source:

…diving in the UNESCO World Heritage Site Tubbataha Reefs Natural Park and marvel at the diversity of its marine species.

We also have historical landmarks right at the metro if you choose to see nearby sights.

It will be much more fun if you join us at the 2013 Partnerships against Poverty Summit!

  • Go here to Register
  • Go here to give your ideas for sessions or speakers that would like to see at the Summit
  • Go here to learn about how you could become a sponsor of the Summit