by guest author, Seena Aras, Director of Online and Annual Giving at Grameen Foundation
Despite incredible economic progress over the past two decades, Asia remains home to the majority of the world’s poor people.
Grameen Foundation creates economic opportunities that help the world’s poorest, especially women, improve their lives and escape poverty. We focus on five core countries in Asia—China, India, Indonesia, Pakistan, and the Philippines—where we have provided support for many years. Together, these countries are home to more than 60 percent of the world’s poor people, living on just $2.50/day, and more than 70 percent of the world’s poorest people, living on just $1.25/day.
Now, you and a guest can have the chance to take part in our innovative delivery of microfinance and technology services to the world’s poorest people—all by joining The Ingenuity Fund Challenge and competing for the grand prize trip.
The Ingenuity Fund Challenge is a way for you to tap into your own creativity and make an impact on ending the cycle of poverty endured by millions around the world. By joining the Challenge, you’ll have the opportunity to develop the most compelling ways to educate your friends, families, and networks about Grameen Foundation. Through March 31st, 2010, Challenge participants will develop compelling, creative personal Ingenuity Fund Challenge fundraising pages on Grameen Foundation’s website and raise awareness of and funds for Grameen Foundation’s work through personal networks, social media, and other offline activities. The participant with the most creative, ingenious web page and outreach effort will win the grand prize of an overseas field visit.
Our donors like Annie Chen and Raja Malkani have witnessed firsthand our work in Inner Mongolia, an autonomous region of China. During the trip, Annie visited Chifeng Zhaowuda Women’s Sustainable Development Association (CZWSDA), a microfinance institution, where she met microfinance clients and saw how their small enterprises improved their lives and those of their families. Raja met microfinance borrowers stitching and selling clothing, operating seed shops, and growing and selling crops. “It’s amazing what microfinance can do for such people,” Raja said. “The borrowers I met didn’t just gain financially; they gained self-esteem and a sense of independence, too.”
“I like the fact that microfinance is built on a model that involves empowering individuals to explore and develop their own potentials and strengths, rather than on giving handouts,” Annie said.
If you are up to the challenge, please check out our resource page to read the full details and eligibility requirements in the contest rules.