Microfinance for marginalized communities, Mexico

by Instituto Mexicano de Investigacion de Familia y Poblacion - IMIFAP
Microfinance-- Communal Water Distribution System
Microfinance-- Communal Water Distribution System

IMIFAP does AMAZING work!!! I am not entirely sure how else to say it.  My site visit with IMIFAP was a blessing and perhaps one of the most inspiring visits I have personally encountered in nearly three years of development work throughout much of the world.  The family environment at IMIFAP headquarters serves only as a complimentary bonus to the quality professionalism and in depth analysis in which they adhere to.  It's with no surprise that IMIFAP has been so successful using GlobalGiving.  The team is diverse, highly educated, meticulous, innovative, collaborative, and passionate-- need I go on.  

In addition to taking me to visit one of the beneficiaries of their microfinance project (a huge success story--see attached photo), IMIFAP allowed me the unique privilege of sitting in on one of their workshops geared towards educating women.  A synopsis of this project is beyond the scope of this brief summary but it should be recognized that IMIFAP has established a unique, effective methodology that has been implemented by trained, seasoned experts and engendered within the communities they serve.  One of the experts said during the workshop that their objective is to be "facilitators" not "directors."  A profound statement indeed.  

In addition to their unwavering passion and unfettered community support, they are perhaps one of the most hospitable organizations I have had the opportunity to encounter.  It is without reservation that I wholeheartedly endorse IMIFAP and encourage GlobalGiving donors wanting to channel funds to high impact work, to consider this organization.  In sum, there is no luck involved in the success rates achieved with IMIFAP projects and their ability to continuously replicate.  

Thanks to Shoshanna and all the other members of IMIFAP who made this site visit a memorable visit and established an organizational paragon to be emulated throughout the development field.    

Program participant answers questionnaire
Program participant answers questionnaire

IMIFAP-“I want to, I can” visited three communities in Tuxtepec, Oaxaca in January where new community banks have been saving for about 10 weeks. Our visit spurred a lot of new enthusiasm among community members!

In one of the communities we visited, Salcipuedes, Tuxtepec, the number of bank members nearly doubled during January. Community members who were previously unsure about participating attended our meeting with the bank members and left excited about the program. We expect this bank to be very successful as these new members contribute their energy and savings.

During the January visits we also undertook 45 pre-program questionnaires with members of the community banks in Salcipuedes and Colonia Obrera, Tuxtepec. Evaluation is an important part of our methodology because above all we want to ensure that IMIFAP-“I want to, I can” programs are successful. Together with undertaking these questionnaires again after the program, we will be able to measure changes in savings practices, life skills and knowledge about starting small businesses. 

Thank you for your continued support of microenterprise in communities in Hidalgo and Oaxaca, Mexico.


IMIFAP-“Yo quiero, yo puedo” visitó a tres comunidades en Tuxtepec, Oaxaca en enero donde nuevos bancos comunitarios han estado ahorrando durante las últimas diez semanas. ¡La visita de IMIFAP fomentó mucho entusiasmo para participar en los bancos!

En la comunidad Salcipuedes, Tuxtepec, el número de socios en el banco aumentó en casi un 100%. Específicamente, la visita de IMIFAP-“Yo quiero, yo puedo” alivió las dudas de muchas personas que no estaban seguras de involucrarse o no en el programa. Llegaron tantos nuevos participantes a la reunión, emocionados a participar en el programa, que estamos seguros de que este banco tendrá éxito conforme los nuevos miembros contribuyen su energía y ahorros. 

Durante esta visita de enero también logramos aplicar 45 cuestionarios de evaluación previa al programa a miembros de los bancos en Salcipuedes y Colonia Obrera, Tuxtepec. La evaluación es una parte clave de la metodología de IMIFAP-“Yo quiero, yo puedo” para asegurar que nuestros programas sean precisos y exitosos. Los cuestionarios nos permitirán medir cambios en hábitos de ahorro, habilidades para la vida, conocimiento de ahorro y pequeños negocios después del programa. 

Gracias por tu apoyo continúo a programas de microfinanzas en comunidades de Hidalgo y Oaxaca, México.


A program participant tallies savings.
A program participant tallies savings.

Year-end total savings and savings rates are in! The community banks have crunched and tallied the numbers and the results are astounding:

Over the course of the program, 179 participants in 14 banks have saved a total of 234,800 pesos (19,000 dollars). The bank with the highest total savings was Banco Unión with 31,468 pesos (2,545 dollars) saved by its members, in Los Fresnos, Hidalgo. The average savings rate per person across all of the banks was 48 pesos per week, which is about 4 dollars. Some members are now able to save nearly as much as they used to earn in an entire week due to the profits from small businesses they started with their savings!

Needless to say, our microfinance participants will be celebrating their success this New Year. We hope that you will celebrate as well for having contributed to the success of this program in 2010, and will consider making a recurring donation to support the program’s growth in 2011. Happy New Year from IMIFAP-“I want to, I can”!



Ya se calcularon los totales y promedios de ahorro de los bancos comunitarios. Los números te asombrarán:

179 participantes de 14 bancos han ahorrado un total de 234,800 pesos al final de este año. El banco que más pesos ahorró fue Banco Unión en Los Fresons, Hidalgo con 31,468 pesos ahorrados por sus miembros. El promedio de ahorro de cada participante a través de todos los bancos era 48 pesos cada semana. Algunos miembros ahora pueden ahorrar casi tanto como lo que solían ganar en una semana debido a los ingresos de los pequeños negocios que empezaron con sus ahorros.

No cabe duda que nuestros participantes del programa de microfinanzas estarán festejando sus éxitos en vísperas de este Año Nuevo. Esperamos que celebres también por haber contribuido al éxito de este programa durante el 2010 y que consideres hacer una donación recurrente para apoyar al crecimiento del programa en el 2011. ¡Feliz Año Nuevo de IMIFAP-“Yo quiero, yo puedo”!


Celebrating the inauguration of the plant!
Celebrating the inauguration of the plant!

November was an exciting month for the IMIFAP “I want to, I can” microfinance program! After months of saving, preparation and hard work, bank members in Ixmiquilpan celebrated the inauguration of their water purification plant. These microfinance participants are not only changing their own lives, they are changing their communities!

Also last month, five new banks were started in Molango, Hidalgo, adding 69 participants to the program. IMIFAP’s local facilitators visited the communities to help get the banks started and establish the members’ “rights and responsibilities”.

Our program participants didn’t wait until the New Year to make a new beginning and a positive change in their lives, and neither should you! Help make a difference today by continuing to support microfinance in these communities.


En noviembre celebramos nuevos avances y nuevos comienzos para el programa de microfinanzas en Hidalgo. Después de meses de ahorrar, preparar y trabajar arduamente, los miembros del banco en Ixmiquilpan festejaron la inauguración de su planta de purificación de agua. ¡Los participantes del programa de microfinanzas no tan solo están cambiando sus vidas, sino están mejorando sus comunidades!

También durante el mes pasado, se abrieron cinco nuevos bancos con 69 socios en total en el municipio de Molango. Los facilitadores locales de IMIFAP visitaron las comunidades para ayudarles a los bancos a arrancar y establecer los derechos y responsabilidades de los miembros.

Nuestros participantes no esperaron hasta el Año Nuevo para crear un nuevo comienzo y cambio positivo en sus vidas, y ¡tú tampoco deberías de esperar! Haz una diferencia hoy al continuar a apoyar las microfinanzas en estas comunidades.

Members of a new bank in Molango get together
Members of a new bank in Molango get together


Bank member improves his business plan with IMIFAP
Bank member improves his business plan with IMIFAP

Over the past two months, the members of community banks in Hidalgo have worked hard to make their ideas a reality. Below you will find an update on the water purification project mentioned in August’s report as well as the story of two more bank members working to improve their blacksmith shop.

The water purification project in Ixmiquilpan, Hidalgo has advanced over the past two months. The members of “Banco C.L.C.” made their first payment on the water purification plant using their savings, and expect the system to be up and running in a month, bringing affordable, potable water to the community.

Also in Ixmiquilpan, two members of the community bank “La Union,” a blacksmith and his wife, are improving their small business. With a loan from IMIFAP “I want to, I can”, they were able to purchase new equipment that will improve the quality and expand the type of products they produce. Previously, they sold only housing fixtures such as doors and windows, but now he is brainstorming what other metal products will sell well. They are also planning to acquire business cards, are developing a marketing plan to the reach more clients, and are considering hiring an assistant so that the business can grow even more.

The determination and creativity of our microfinance program participants is astounding.  Thank you for supporting them as they search for ways to improve their lives and their communities.


Durante los últimos dos meses, los miembros de los bancos comunitarios han estado trabajando arduamente para convertir sus sueños en realidad. Abajo encontrarás los avances sobre el proyecto de purificación de agua mencionado en el reporte del mes de agosto y la historia de dos miembros de un banco quienes están mejorando su pequeño herrería

El proyecto de purificación de agua en Ixmiquilpan, Hidalgo ha avanzado favorablemente en los últimos dos meses. Los miembros del “Banco C.L.C.” utilizaron sus ahorros para realizar el primer pago para la instalación del purificador que les permitirá, en aproximadamente un mes, llevar agua potable y económica a la comunidad entera.

También en Ixmiquilpan, dos miembros del banco comunitario “La Union”, un herrero y su esposa, están mejorando su pequeña empresa. Gracias a un préstamo de IMIFAP, lograron comprar nuevos equipos que aumentarán la calidad y variedad de los productos que producen.  Anteriormente sólo vendían puertas y rejas para ventanas; sin embargo,  ahora están pensando qué otros productos de metal podrían vender. Asimismo, planean comprar tarjetas de presentación, desarrollar un plan de mercadotecnia, y  contratar un asistente para que el negocio florezca.

La determinación y creatividad de los participantes de nuestros proyectos de microfinanzas es impresionante. ¡Gracias por apoyarlos mientras sigan buscando las maneras y alternativas para mejorar sus vidas y sus comunidades!



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Organization Information

Instituto Mexicano de Investigacion de Familia y Poblacion - IMIFAP

Location: Mexico City, Mexico - Mexico
Website: http:/​/​www.yoquieroyopuedo.org.mx
Project Leader:
Anna-Emilia Hietanen
México, DF. , Mexico Mexico

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