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Thursday, February 2, 2017

January 2017 Recap

On January 26, Curtis, Wes, Bob, Nancy, Pat and Katy met and reinvested $1,000 in loans. We made 20 loans to people in 14 countries, from Zimbabwe to Albania to Jordan to Nicaragua. One loan that was close to expiring was refunded, Katy went in and found another loan that was similar and funded it after the meeting.

At the meeting, Katy gave out some numbers from our lending activities in 2016. The committee made 139 loans totaling $7,250 in 50 countries. We discussed that while our account is well funded, the current political climate means our lending activity will likely become even more important as aid resources are pulled back. We encourage everyone to check in with their personal accounts and keep those payback dollars working.

Katy proposed that we move the March meeting to the 23rd to avoid being too early for our paybacks to have been credited to our account.

Monday, June 27, 2016

June 2016 Recap

May was an extremely busy month, and it was difficult to get the committee together to meet. Since we did not have much credit to re-lend, we decided to forgo the May meeting and do a digital meeting on June 23. Consuelo Bennett, Wes Smits, and Katy Fink-Johnson made seven $50 loans. Two of the loans were to new countries, Madagascar and Moldova.

The Wellshire Microfinance Committee, which invests monies given directly to it by members of the Wellshire community, has made 425 loans totaling $13,775 since September 28, 2011. On kiva.org, Team Wellshire Microfinance, made up of 58 members from the Wellshire greater community, has made a total of 2,036 loans totaling $55,725. That's 2,036 PEOPLE whose lives have been directly impacted. Two thousand thirty-six people who are one step closer to improved financial security and economic independence. We are deeply grateful to the Wellshire community for their continued generosity to this endeavor.

The committee will meet in person for its regularly scheduled meeting on Thursday, July 21 at noon at Wellshire.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

March 2016 Recap

The Wellshire Microfinance Committee was snowed out of its March meeting, so we met by email instead. I thoroughly enjoy seeing the variety of loans our members are interested in funding, from water filters to compost, farming to education, men and women, young and old. We funded two experimental loans, one to Ham's Group in Cambodia, and one to Ivan in Uganda. Using the suggestions sent in by Wes Smits, Curtis Roe, and Beth Pannbacker, 27 loans were funded using $676.04 from the restricted fund.

The total number of loans for the entire team in March 2016 was 58. Former committee chair and devoted lender Wes Smits alerted me to the fact that the Wellshire Microfinance Team has made $51,400 in loans in its 4 1/2 years of existence. We celebrate the team members for their continued commitment and dedication to helping the world's poorest people make a better life for themselves.

The committee will meet in person on April 28, 2016 at noon at Wellshire Church to continue dispersing the funds received at the end of 2015.

Katy Fink-Johnson

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

February 2016 Microfinance Recap

The microfinance committee did not meet in February, but the members of the Wellshire Microfinance Team were busy, making 26 loans on their own.

At the close of 2015, over $3,000 in end-of-year gifts were designated for the Microfinance Committee. A discussion is ongoing about how best and how quickly to distribute these funds. $360 has been given to Club 45 for their next meeting.

The answer to the question about loans in South Africa is simple: there aren't very many field partners there directing loan recipients to Kiva. There are regularly loans available in South Africa, but we just aren't lucky enough to see them when they are there.

Our next meeting will be Thursday, March 24, 2016 at noon at Wellshire, not March 17 as was previously stated.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

2015: Year in Review

In 2015, the Kiva/Wellshire Microfinance committee funded 94 loans in 32 countries for $3,475. The entire Wellshire team, which has 58 members, made $13,650 in loans, a decrease of $75 from 2014. The Wellshire team has made loans in 65 of 83 available countries.

January 2016 Meeting Recap

The Kiva/Microfinance committee met on January 21, 2016 for our first meeting of the new year. In attendance was Curtis Roe, Bill Strickland, Bob Britt, and Katy Fink-Johnson. We discussed what to do if shortly after we have a meeting a loan is refunded due to not being fully funded on the website. It was decided that Katy would search for a similar loan and reinvest that money rather than hold onto it for two months. During this meeting, the committee made its first ever loan to South Africa. This is because there are almost never any loans in South Africa on the Kiva website. Katy sent an email to Kiva to inquire as to why.

We made 9 loans to people in El Salvador, Mexico, Tajikistan, Samoa, Rwanda, Albania, and South Africa. Our next scheduled meeting is Thursday, March 17 at 12:00 pm.

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

November 2015: Presentations, Loans, New Ideas, Next Meeting

On Sunday, November 1, 2015, Wes Smits made a presentation about KIVA to approximately ten individuals during the adult study hour. For most in attendance, it was their first time hearing about the origins of microfinance, and then Wellshire's initial steps with KIVA.

As a demonstration about how easy it is to get involved, the group funded $25 to JUAN RAMIRO from Bolivia (a cobbler). He is buying cattle and a sewing machine. Repayments begin January 2016 thru March 2017. Katy has put information about this loan aside so that we may update the congregation on its progress.

An idea came up in the discussion: to fund an account (suggested $100) for each high school graduate through the Wellshire MicroFinance team. This would symbolize the graduate going out into the world, but still with connections to Wellshire, to do good things for others. An alternative would be to do this for the confirmation class.

Since August 26, 2015, the Wellshire Kiva team has funded 83 loans. Our recipients are 58% female and 42% male. The four countries that have received the most loans from the entire group are Kenya, Uganda, Philippines, and El Salvador. The team has made loans to 65 of 83 countries. The microfinance committee continues to avoid making loans to India but does not discourage individual members from doing so on their own.

The next meeting is Thursday, November 19, 2015, at noon. The Alternative Christmas Market is Sunday, November 22 from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm.