The Lending Journey Is A Very Different Microfinance Charity
..."Give a person a fish and you'll feed them for a day. Teach them to fish, and you'll feed them for a lifetime. Eat the fish with them, and become friends for life."
This best describes The Lending Journey. We are a very different micro-finance charity.
We are not a transactional micro-finance charity. There are 3 distinct differences in the way we approach micro-loans and micro-lending:
We go where no-one else goes: We serve primarily in underserved financially and socially vulnerable communities;
We provide tools to help start and grow businesses: Every micro-loan borrower takes part in a weekly, 26 week training program focused on building confidence and personal value and building a strong business;
We create personal relationships, a personal bond through which every borrower has support beyond their business: In the most vulnerable communities, personal survival is as much a challenge as keeping a business running. We build personal relationships with each of our borrowers and their families so that they can come to us for support when life happens. From connecting them with with social and spiritual help to additional support during a hard time, our community leaders are always there.
See below for real stories and more detail on why The Lending Journey is a very different micro-loan charity.
Serving the Most Underserved
We work primarily in underserved communities. These are typically communities that have little to no financial and social aid from government or NGOs. In these communities the daily wage is typically less than US$5 a day and can be less than US$1.25 a day, which is considered extreme poverty by the United Nations. To extend our reach, we build strong community connections with local churches and social workers.
These are deserving communities. In our experience the women microloan borrowers demonstrate many inspiring attributes that drive their success:
Examples: In communities where there is little hope for income security without begging and crime, these women want to be examples to their families and communities that there is an alternative to a better life. They want to show their children that there is an opportunity to look at themselves in a positive light with a future;
Self-esteem: We see personal growth with every women we work with. When we show love for them, they begin to show love for themselves; and
Perseverance: We work with women who want a hand up not a hand out. They all have a desire to succeed for their families and themselves and are steadfast in standing up to the many challenges that threaten their success.
Training and Strong Life-long Personal Relationships
One of the Lending Journey's main goals is to help facilitate success in business AND personal growth. Every microloan borrower participates in a weekly, 26 week training course focused on building their businesses and building themselves. Our community leaders facilitate this course within each community and has been instrumental in transforming borrowers lives spiritually, emotionally and in their business.
We believe in creating an environment for success in business and in life. We provide a mandatory weekly, 26 week, training program to every microloan borrower.
Walking Alongside Each Borrower
Our community leaders providing clothing to hurricane victims in Nicaragua.
We are not a transactional micro-finance charity. We're there when life happens!
We have helped to rebuild homes, provide food to families when a breadwinner is sick and cannot work to support their family and attempted to buy a girl out of slavery. We practise active listening with our ears, emotional support with our hearts, and with our hands break bread.
These are life-long relationships.
We understand that there are many unimaginable barriers that women and businesses face in economically and socially challenged communities. Even those women who have built a successful enterprise, face the same barriers every day. Our community leaders and local church network build personal relationships with each of our micro-loan borrowers and their families so that they can come to us for support when life happens. From connecting them with with social and spiritual help to additional support during a hard time, our community leaders are always there.
Many Are Repeat Borrowers
We maintain our relationships with borrowers well after their loans are repaid. We are always there to extend a hand. In many instances our borrowers will take out multiple loans over the course of their borrowing relationship with the Lending Journey. Each time they pay back their loan, we are ready, willing and able to re-lend it again.