Friday, May 11, 2012

New Field Partner: ID Ghana combines loans and health services to help borrowers thrive

A warm welcome to Kiva’s newest field partner, ID Ghana!

With five branches in the greater Accra area, ID Ghana provides financial services to underserved communities in the Ghanaian capital -- but we are especially excited about its commitment to impactful social work.

ID Ghana has developed a unique methodology to form groups of clients who can borrow individually with no group liability. This enables borrowers to benefit from the valuable support of the group, but still allows each individual to pursue their respective business. Each group undergoes a series of trainings over a six-week period, including topics like group dynamics and the importance of savings.

Once a group has been established, one of ID Ghana’s Training Officers visits the group twice a month to conduct further business and social trainings.

At the time of Kiva's visit, groups were receiving training in malaria prevention and treatment.

“We look for impact,” ID Ghana Training Officer Michael tells us as we walk back from a borrower visit. “What good is it if we teach people all there is to know about malaria, but they still don’t go to get treated?”

In addition to offering health trainings, ID Ghana has enabled 3,000 previously uninsured borrowers to obtain health insurance through a subsidy program. By offering a subsidy for the first three years and administering health insurance cards, ID Ghana is helping Ghanaians become healthier and financially stable.

Since teaching is often the best way to learn, ID Ghana implemented a peer education system. Already, 102 borrowers have been selected to conduct social training sessions with their groups. 

“We help them develop their facilitation skills, check what they already know about the particular subject, and help fill in the blanks,” Michael explains. As a result, ID Ghana is able to reach more people and empower their borrowers at the same time. 

Rose, pictured above, is a member of a group of borrowers in Teshie, one of the poorest areas of Accra. Already in her fourth loan cycle with ID Ghana, she was excited to take us to her home. Rose lives near the water, where she buys large quantities of fish to smoke and sell at a local market. Together with the income her husband earns as a fisherman, Rose’s smoked fish supports the couple and their four children.

Kiva is proud to support ID Ghana and borrowers like Rose -- you can lend to others like her here. To learn more about ID Ghana, visit their Kiva Partner Page. Send any questions or comments about ID Ghana or Kiva's work in Ghana to