Opportunity International

Our mission is to provide opportunities for people in chronic poverty to transform their lives. Our strategy is to create jobs, stimulate small businesses and strengthen communities among the poor. Our method is to work through sustainable local microfinance institutions that provide small business loans, savings, insurance and training. Our commitment is motivated by Jesus Christ's call to serve the poor. Our core values are respect, commitment to the poor, integrity and stewardship.
Jan 7, 2014

Program Update: Empowering Women in India

In 1989, Opportunity International began operations in India, home to the largest global concentration of impoverished people. Although regulatory uncertainty in India continues to make loan disbursement difficult, Opportunity India today serves more than 1.4 million clients throughout the country, and disburses 98 percent of its loans to women.

Because of your support we have been able to provide the following financial, products services and training to women in India: 

  • Insurance: Opportunity India partners with our insurance subsidiary, MicroEnsure, to offer health, life and accident insurance.
  • Habitat for Humanity partnership: Opportunity India is developing affordable Housing Loans relevant to the interests and needs of our clients.
  • Empowering and Mentoring: Mentoring designed to educate women on domestic violence awareness, family health and suicide prevention.
  • Community Outreach: Opportunity' s programs in India build strategic alliances to encourage community-wide transformation. For example, through Dia Vikas we address water, sanitation and health issues in partnerships with Healing Fields and Water.org.

With your support, we are meeting the unique needs of the women we serve in India through targeted financial services and products that make a practical, holistic transformation in their daily lives. This project on GlobalGiving has reached its fully funded status!! Thank you for all your help. All recurring donations in existance to this project will be rolled over to a similar Opportunity International program in the Philippines. Please email getinfo@opportunity.org with any questions about this projects closure due to being funded completely! 

Dec 27, 2013

Opportunities for Economic Growth

In this country, roughly the geographical size of Europe and plagued by war, economic instability and corruption, an Opportunity International financial institution can help to make the difference between families being able to afford only three meals per week to families being able to afford three meals per day.

The people of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) have suffered greatly over the past 40 years. Ethnic conflict and a civil war between government troops and rebel groups in Eastern Congo have contributed to high levels of poverty. Only 1 percent of the DRC’s citizens have access to basic financial services. Fortunately, recent economic liberalization has opened up opportunities that will allow sustainable economic growth to gain a foothold.Here are some of the recent accomplishments of our operations in the DRC. 

  • Opportunity DRC plays a critical role in this country's growth process by providing financial services such as loans,savings and training to hardworking entrepreneurs and their families. Opportunity DRC’s operations began in January 2011, giving many microentrepreneurs in the Masina market of Kinshasa their first access to small business capital. We are also the first microfinance provider in the Congo to use biometric fingerprint recognition for clients to access their accounts.
  • In addition to that, we focus heavily on personal growth for staff and clients. The transformation program comprises five modules, covering topics such as family health, nutrition, and disease prevention and control. The training is in Lingala, the local language, and pertinent to life in Kinshasa. Lessons on nutrition, for example, use local food rather than the generic food pyramid.

Thank you for all of your support for our DRC operations since 2011. 24 out of 25 of the worlds poorest countries are in Africa. In order to have the largest impact on this region, we would like to combine this project into a broader "Banking on Africa, 7660" project. This project spans multiple countries including - GhanaKenyaRwandaTanzaniaThe Democratic Republic of CongoMalawiMozambiqueSouth Africa, and Uganda. This project has the same mission and vision of #7928 which is to provide access to financial solutions empowering people living in poverty to transform their lives, their children’s futures and their communities. If you have any questions about our work in Kenya and the rest of Africa or our decision to combine projects please email us at getinfo@opportunity.org

Dec 27, 2013

7 years of success because of you

Opportunity Kenya was established in 2006. The need for stable financial structures became increasingly apparent as the country faced violence and significant political unrest following the disputed presidential elections in December 2007. Opportunity quickly responded to this crisis by establishing the Kenya Emergency Fund, a $1 million fund that has helped our clients rebuild their lives.

Today, Opportunity operates through branches in the Western Province of Kenya, an impoverished area plagued by HIV/AIDS, and in the Nairobi area, where urban slums are home to millions who struggle to make ends meet. 

Over the past few years we have achieved our goals of offering a variety of loan products and training to enable clients living in poverty to transform their lives. Opportunity's Kenyan sites offer many products and services to help clients meet the challenges of building and running businesses sustainably. 

  • In 2012, we launched new client financial literacy training modules and partnered with Citi Foundation to launch a series of training DVDs covering personal and business growth topics.
  • Our local management team recently benefited from corporate governance and leadership training, and all staff participated in customer care training to ensure Opportunity International’s core values are embedded into the staff culture.
  • Opportunity successflly began piloting loan repayments using cell phones at the Kawangware branch in Nairobi in 2011. This service brings clients increased convenience, flexibility and security, and aims to increase security by eliminating the need for clients and loan officers to carry cash to Trust Group meetings.
  • According to USAID, nearly one million Kenyan children do not attend primary school, and only one quarter of the youth are enrolled in secondary school. Opportunity Kenya has developed and launched a pilot program for school fee loans that help parents fund their children’s education through assistance with educational expenses such as tuition, books and uniforms.

Thank you for all of your support for the thousands of Kenyan entreprenurs working their way out of poverty. The problem is larger than just one country. 24 out of 25 of the worlds poorest countries are in Africa. In order to have the largest impact on this region, we would like to combine this project into a broader "Banking on Africa, 7660" project. This project spans multiple countries including - GhanaKenyaRwandaTanzaniaThe Democratic Republic of CongoMalawiMozambiqueSouth Africa, and Uganda. This project has the same mission and vision of #6663 which is to provide access to financial solutions empowering people living in poverty to transform their lives, their children’s futures and their communities.

If you have any questions about our work in Kenya and the rest of Africa or our decision to combine projects please email us at getinfo@opportunity.org

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