Monday, January 25, 2010

NGO Profile: Pro Mujer

Microfinance, a practice that has gained recognition and popularity in the past decades, is a lending strategy that aims to alleviate poverty by providing individuals small loans and logistical support as
they pursue entrepreneurial projects. In contrast to one-size-fits-all national or international aid programs which center on disbursement of stipends, microfinance has been praised for fostering empowerment and professional development on a personal level and cited for its programmatic sustainability.

Pro Mujer is an organization devoted to microfinance and women’s development in Latin America with the goal of alleviating poverty through financial support, health care, and professional training. The organization sees women as the heart of the family, and believes that supporting women is the best way to create a sustainable increase in the quality of life for families worldwide.

Pro Mujer pursues this ideal by providing not only microcredit to female entrepreneurs, but also the health, business, and finance training that will assist them as they make positive and long-lasting changes in many areas of their lives.
Founded in 1990 by American Lynne Patterson and Bolivian Carmen Velasco, Pro Mujer’s credit and training methodology were developed in Bolivia. Currently, there are operations in El Alto, La Paz, Cochabamba, Sucre, Tarija, Santa Cruz, Potosi, Oruro, Trinidad, Ribera. The model was replicated later in Nicaragua, Peru, Mexico, and Argentina. In 2008, the organization disbursed over $180 million in loans, with an average loan of $208. The organization boasts 211,000 current clients.

Pro Mujer has received accolades from the Inter-American Development Bank, Forbes Magainze, the World Bank, The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and MicroRate, a microfinance external rating agency.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the kind words. I have linked to your blog from fb. We have a blog too, please visit and let us know what you think.

    Maren Hill
    Communications Associate
    Pro Mujer