Wednesday, August 15, 2012

New Field Partner: WSDS offers creative loan products in remote parts of India

Join us in extending a warm welcome to WSDS, a new Field Partner in India!

A nonprofit organization active in the remote northeastern Indian state of Manipur, WSDS was founded in 1989 to respond to ethnic conflict between the region’s three major tribes. Since then, WSDS has made tremendous efforts to support young people, women, and other vulnerable segments of the population. 

WSDS client weaving.

Today, to reach the region's most underserved groups -- including young people, women and minorities like Nepali immigrants and Muslims -- the organization is involved in a range of development activities, including resource management, community health, social security, and microfinance.

Recognizing the dire lack of financial services available in Manipur, WSDS launched its microfinance program in 2007. And, building on local traditions of support and leadership, the organization primarily works with borrower-formed self-help groups to extend credit and encourage clients to save.

WSDS client's home with a loom on the front porch.

WSDS also creates and tailors loan products to fit specific client needs. For example, it launched a solar lamp loan program to help borrowers in areas where there is no electricity, and the common alternative -- kerosene -- is especially expensive due to frequent economic blockades. 

Kiva loans will help individuals that have been unable to obtain credit in the past due to scarcity of financial services, and help them start and grow their small businesses. Kiva’s zero-interest capital will also strengthen WSDS’ financial position, allowing it to expand all of its programs for social good.

Support one of WSDS' borrowers today! Or learn more about the organization on its Kiva partner profile page.

Rowing in Manipur.

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