Our Blog

A Special Chat Session with Alex Counts

Friday, April 11, 2014 - 08:27

In celebration of National Volunteer Week, and to recognize some of our valued volunteers, Bankers without Borders® (BwB) launched a very special offering this week: our brand new “Chat with the CEO” sessions. These quarterly sessions are designed to provide BwB volunteers the opportunity to meet 'face-to-face' with Alex Counts, CEO and President of Grameen Foundation, to discuss their experiences. Our very first session held on April 10, 2014 was a success on many fronts. As we gathered around the table, virtually of course, I could sense everyone’s excitement including my own. The... Read More

Unlocking Access to Capital for Underserved US Entrepreneurs - J.P. Morgan and the Association for Enterprise Opportunity

Wednesday, April 9, 2014 - 12:00

In honor of National Volunteer Week, Bankers without Borders is recognizing our Skillanthropists who use their skills and talents to support both domestic and international organizations that are working to lift millions out of poverty. For more volunteer stories like this one, check out our new Five Year Impact Report! A NEW APPROACH Economic advancement can be elusive for millions on Main Street and microbusiness owners. Lack of access tomoderately-priced capital, information and services prevent many business owners and aspiring entrepreneurs from gaining the traction they need to sustain... Read More

Five Year Impact Report

Monday, April 7, 2014 - 07:46

Over the course of our first five years, we’ve invested a lot of time in trying to perfect our model and learn what’s working and what’s not. We’ve applied a rigor to evaluating our efforts that many volunteer-based programs have not, in large part because they often lack the funding or technology to do so. And now that we have enough experience to speak with more authority on the real, tangible benefits and outcomes we’re seeing (or not), we feel it’s our duty to share what we know with others who just might care because the problem of global poverty is far too large and complex for Bankers... Read More

Announcing the Skillanthropy Giveaway Campaign Winners!

Monday, April 7, 2014 - 06:41

As part of our ongoing five year anniversary celebration, Bankers without Borders launched the Skillanthropy™ Giveaway Competition, to find and recognize organizations utilizing skill-based volunteerism to make a positive impact in the world. The five winning organizations will each receive Skillanthropy, our proprietary, end-to-end volunteer management technology solution, which helps organizations streamline volunteer recruitment efforts, more efficiently manage and monitor projects, better understand their impact, and evaluate their outcomes. The winners are:  Atlas Service Corps addresses... Read More

What We’ve Been Reading: April 4th, 2014

Friday, April 4, 2014 - 10:52

This week on What We’ve Been Reading, we’re looking at some of the major breakthroughs and effective tools for international development, with a focus on mobile technology and its importance.               According to Devex, there are six major global development innovations that can change the scope and effectiveness of different areas of development in the future. One example is the rise of solar technology, which offers a cleaner and longer-lasting fuel and energy source than the commonly used kerosene in Africa and Asia. Once a very expensive fuel source, advancements in technology have... Read More

Open Volunteer and Internship Opportunities in the US and Kenya!

Tuesday, April 1, 2014 - 09:46

Brand Expert - Branding in Action with Trust for the Americas Start Date: April 15th, 2014 Estimated Hours: Medium Term (101-500 hours) Region: United States (discussing Latin America and the Caribbean) Application Deadline: April 4th, 2014 Description:  Trust for the Americas (TFTA) is a non-profit organization affiliated with The Organization of American States, established in 1997 to promote public and private sector participation in social and economic development interventions in Latin America and the Caribbean. TFTA’s initiatives, implemented through partnerships with respected civil... Read More

GF Fellow Laura Burns: Tech Knowledge and Demonic Rabbits

Monday, March 31, 2014 - 09:06

Remember how a few posts back I mentioned I was a bit tech challenged? Well, the plot has thickened. I’ve moved a few techs steps beyond teaching farmers how to turn phones on and off, how to take screen shots, fill out surveys, sync phones, and troubleshoot. Because now? Now I’m helping build those tools. It all started innocently enough. After helping prepare a solutions workshop, where we meet with our partners to determine what their needs are and how Grameen Foundation can fill those needs, I was asked to develop mockups of what our tech tools would look like. This in itself was a... Read More

What We’ve Been Reading: March 29th, 2014

Friday, March 28, 2014 - 11:09

This week is all about the world of social enterprises and social businesses in What We’ve Been Reading! First and foremost, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology hosted the second Scaling Development Ventures Conference last month, which brings together impressive social entrepreneurs and organizations committed to combining international development and entrepreneurship. In the conference, these groups discussed various models and ideas that could be implemented to scale up social enterprises and business in order to create significant socioeconomic impact in the developing world. For... Read More

GF Fellow Jason Loughnane: A Visit to the e-Warehouse

Friday, March 28, 2014 - 10:25

Last week, I joined three Grameen staff for a road trip to Meru, a rural district in central Kenya and the hub of Grameen’s e-Warehouse program. A quick primer on e-Warehouse: the hypothesis of the program is that farmers’ disposable cash is at its lowest point just around the time of their semi-annual crop harvest - after they have paid for all of the necessary inputs, harvesting and processing costs, but before they’ve sold any of their bags of grain at the market. This cash shortage compels them to sell their grains at whatever price is offered to them, virtually guaranteed to be the... Read More

Five Things I Learned from Meeting the Fellows in the Field- Buzzfeed Style!

Wednesday, March 19, 2014 - 09:56

Last year, Grameen Foundation launched its first ever Fellowship Program. Nearly 1,000 people applied and we selected nine incredibly talented and driven professionals to serve on unique placements with Grameen Foundation teams in Colombia, the US, Kenya, Uganda, and Indonesia.    In preparation for launching our next Fellowship recruitment round, I travelled to Nairobi, Kenya, and Kampala, Uganda, to meet four of our fellows face-to-face and get a glimpse of their worlds. Here’s what my travels taught me about Grameen Foundation’s Fellowship Program: 1. It’s a year of rare opportunities.... Read More