First of all, we'd like to thank all of our supporters on GlobalGiving. We thought you might be interested in knowing what we've been up to since our last update in January! We are currently in the surveying phase of this project, and conducting follow-up surveys 1 month, 3 month, 6 months and 1 year after we paid off the vendors' debts. These surveys attempt to capture information about employment within the household, the vendor's business, savings, borrowing, hardships suffered by the vendor's household, and the vendor's level of financial literacy. So far, the 1-month and 3-month surveys have been completed and the 6-month and 1-year surveys will be completed at the appropriate time. As a show of appreciation, we give each vendor we interview a small gift. Although we are still in the process of collecting information, we are still a few months away from preliminary results but we do hope to be able to share these with you by our next update.
These surveys will help policymakers and people in the microfinance industry determine the most effective way to keep micro-entrepreneurs out of debt and the degree to which avoiding moneylenders should be emphasized. We will also get a much clearer picture of why vendors borrow from moneylenders in the first place and the extent to which vendors rely on personal savings or borrowing from friends to deal with household emergencies.
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