Empower women through financial access & service

by World Vision
Empower women through financial access & service
Empower women through financial access & service
Empower women through financial access & service
Empower women through financial access & service
Empower women through financial access & service
Empower women through financial access & service
Empower women through financial access & service
Empower women through financial access & service
Jeannette with one of the boys she cares for
Jeannette with one of the boys she cares for

VISIONFUND GLOBAL UPDATE October 2017 through March 2018

  • 1.2 MILLION CLIENTS provided with microloans by leveraging $214 million in equity to support
  • $462 million in value of loans disbursed.
  • 4.5 MILLION CHILDREN impacted by microloans, helping parents provide more income for such improvements as nutritious food, school fees, improved housing, and healthcare.


The fund aims to build the resilience of women and their families, improve gender equality, and support the development of women’s livelihoods by increasing access to and quality of financial services to vulnerable women.

The fund is facilitated by VisionFund, the microfinance network of World Vision. The current and first phase of this two-phase project is focusing on significantly growing loan capital for women that can be invested to expand small businesses and farms.

Phase two will seek to strengthen the services we provide women, such as strengthening links to savings for women, developing insurance products specifically for women, and expanding financial education. The fund seeks to improve financial access by doubling the current reach of VisionFund International to annually benefit 2 million women and impact 6 million children by 2021.

So far, $1.4 million has been raised toward the $25 million needed to impact the lives of these women and children, with 24,430 women currently receiving loans through this fund.

Thank you for supporting those who are among the 1.1 billion women worldwide who have no access to financial services.



The 24 members of the Mpozanguhoze lending group, in the Gatsibo district in eastern Rwanda, care for 99 children by growing rice, sorghum, and Irish potatoes. They also sell clothes and local soft drinks as well as raising goats and pigs.

 The group was formed in 2014 with seven members—all women who wanted a measure of independence from asking their husbands for money. They heard about VisionFund Rwanda and soon asked for a group loan of about $2,100 to expand their businesses. At first, they bought and sold items within their group to develop their marketing skills.

 Eventually the group grew, and with their profits they were able to buy land, a sewing machine, and renovate their houses. The members who sold food items initially cooked the food at their own homes. Then they took out a loan together to build commercial kitchens. Their children also have greatly benefited from the work of their mothers. Many of their homes now are equipped with extended electricity. Where they once only had an electric light in the kitchen, they now have lighting in their sitting rooms, which provides places for children to do their homework. Families also have paid school fees, and have been able to buy medical insurance, clothes, and more nutritious food. The leader of the group was able to pay school fees for her husband to attend a computer studies course where he successfully earned a certificate.

 The group also engages with young people in the area to teach them about starting their own businesses and motivating them to avoid drugs and alcohol. The group also has started an initiative called Ihoreremwana (“Don’t Cry Child”) to support orphans and children from extremely poor families.

One member of the group, Jeannette, is a married mother of six children who also is the guardian of two boys. Her four daughters are all married and her younger sons, Jackson, 17, and Seth, 9, are in school. Starting with a $116 loan in 2014, Jeannette has steadily grown her soft drink business while improving her family’s life along the way. She currently is repaying her seventh loan. She now has a store in the market, rather than selling her drinks from home. The store provides a place for clients to sit and enjoy their drinks, and this has made her well known in her community. She also grows bananas and raises pigs and goats that she bought with profits from her business. VisionFund and her membership in Mpozanguhaze have enabled her to take good care of her children and two other children who needed help. It’s also given her standing in the community as a businesswoman and entrepre

Jeannette's loan group
Jeannette's loan group

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Kenia harvests peppers from the community plot
Kenia harvests peppers from the community plot

It´s a warm, bright sunny day in the community of Arauli in eastern Honduras. Kenia (47) wakes up bright and early every morning to start her day. She´s a single mother of 3 children.

Her husband walked out on the family a couple of years ago, leaving her as a single mother and head of her household. Kenia was a housewife, selling food she cooked at home. Kenia recalls “I would wake up early and start cooking, that way I could sell food and have some income. Still I wouldn’t have enough money to care for my family.” She never made enough money to sustain her children and she couldn´t even afford a home of her own.

The community of Araulí is dry and arid. There was a lack of water and many problems around the community, es-pecially for the children. World Vision developed a water project in the area and the community was trained in sani-tation and hygiene, and how to care for the water shed. Kenia became aware of World Vision when her children became sponsored.

Kenia began attending a savings and producer’s association meeting started by World Vision’s THRIVE project. As a single mother, she saw a great opportunity for her family. The ability to save her earnings and learn new farming techniques encouraged her. She learned how to produce better quality vegetables and how to diversify from the traditional Honduran diet of corn, beans and coffee. Now she was able to provide a higher quality product to the local market.

Kenia’s knowledge has been put to the test. She now works in community plots, helping others and applying the techniques that THRIVE has taught her. Since many women use to work in jobs that did not provide enough income to support their families, the THRIVE program has become empowering. The producer’s association has grown from 8 members to 113.

Kenia took out a loan from the savings group to open her own small business. With the loan she bought some chickens and began selling the eggs they laid. The new business helped her grow her savings and she has been able to support her children in a better way. Kenia says, “Being organized has been key to moving forward, as a single mother.”

Kenia started small, saving one dollar a month. Eventually she saved five dollars a month. Now she has nearly $3,000 saved and she wants to invest it in buying her own plot of land to be able to grow her own crops. Her three children have received an education. Her old-est is now 27 years old, her second is 21 years old and is an industrial engineer. Her youngest daughter is 8 years old and is attending ele-mentary school.

Kenia says, “I thank [the producer’s association] for talking me in as a member, and God, because I was able to support my family and give my children an education.”

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Danilda at work
Danilda at work

With help from VisionFund, Danilda has grown a successful business in the slums of northern Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic.

Danilda was 18 years old when her father was killed. That was 15 years ago, and she is understandably still sad when she thinks about it. At the time, she didn’t have much time to grieve. Her brother was 8 years old, so it fell to Danilda to run their father’s upholstery business in the slums of northern Santo Domingo. “I was always in the workshop with my dad and he taught me all that he knew, especially how to be disciplined. That is how I developed the strength and skill to take over his business,” she said. “One week after my father’s death, there was work to do, orders to deliver. I remember people telling me that I should be home helping with the chores and doing school work. But thankfully I didn’t listen. I kept working and learning more. “I studied interior design. I learned how to deal with the customers according to their personality. I took sewing lessons. I learned about creating spaces. I like decoration more than anything else.”

Five years ago, Danilda learned about VisionFund from her sister-in-law, who was a client. She is currently paying off her fourth loan of $566. The loans have helped her expand her business. She now rents a workshop instead of working out of her home. She also is able to buy materials in advance. Before VisionFund, she had to wait until an order came in to start a project. She also bought a generator. The generator allows her to fill orders from furniture stores on time, in spite of many local power outages. Danilda is married to Joel, and they have two children, Robeld Joel, 14, and Genny, 7. Joel works for a construction company and helps Danilda with her business in his spare time. “It is hard work; you have to be tough and do difficult things,” Danilda said. “I feel proud when I take my electric saw and make a piece of furniture. It is wonderful when women can show that we are capable of doing things. “My son feels proud when his  friends admire me, and I like to be an example to my children. I’m proud that they are growing up like I did, not with abundance, but having what they need,” 

My vision for the future is to own my workshop and only employ women workers to help me produce my furniture in bulk. I have faith.”

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Organization Information

World Vision

Location: Federal Way, WA - USA
Project Leader:
Bernadette Martin
Federal Way, WA United States

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