The Global University of Poverty - Curricula Welcome

End Poverty is number 1 job of any keynsian and millennials; future capitalism

I am researching Unitus system organisation so I thought I my as well share my findings, and of course welcome your knowledge editing my attempts

Unitus appears to be one of the top 5 system connectors of partnerships with muhammad yunus type microcredit local franchises ( I would nominate grameenamerica, gramenfoundation, microcreditsummit) in the same category. I see corporate ventures with yunus a different category (see eg yunuspartners). I also categorise opinion leaders like clinton differently

Unitus are Seattle based as are my favourite (until you reinform me) US network for green energy replication 1 2

The significance of a Unitus type multiplier is bot in seeing yunus type models reach all round the world and potentially in helping obama communit build 5 million green jobs in USA since such a movement will also need to rely on community banking and green replicable franchises

Unitus describe themselves like this:
In early 2000, a group of friends met to discuss how they could alleviate poverty. They discussed various economic development methodologies including education, microcredit, and cooperatives. These initial discussions led to the formation of Unitus Action Groups, where individuals brought friends, family, co-workers or neighbors together to unite their efforts in fighting poverty (hence our name: “unite us” became “Unitus”). Much good came from these Unitus Action Groups. Sizable donations were made to worthy NGOs worldwide. But for all their successes, the founders were still not convinced that they were realizing poverty alleviation on a sustainable, global scale.

In the context of this self-evaluation, they traveled to Bangladesh in January 2001 to learn about the Grameen Bank and meet with Muhammad Yunus, Grameen’s founder. The trip changed their lives. It left them convinced that microcredit was the key to large-scale poverty alleviation. But a question still remained: With thousands of microfinance institutions (MFIs) already in existence, how could Unitus best support and leverage microcredit and microfinance? And could Unitus really reach scale quickly if it was constrained by building a field support organization from scratch? Wouldn’t it just be duplicating and overlapping efforts if it created an MFI of its own?

With advice from Muhammad Yunus and further research, the group moved in a new direction and began to explore the microfinance industry in-depth—its successes, failures, strengths, weaknesses, and opportunities. After months of evaluation, a new strategy was developed for Unitus, one that could truly alleviate poverty for millions of people: the Unitus Acceleration Model.

Unitus focuses on accelerating the growth of ambitious MFIs around the globe. We work closely with the social entrepreneurs who lead these organizations to grow their operations and build capacity, so they can serve more micro-entrepreneurs in less time.
Unitus partners include:

Jamii Bora - Kenya , arguably the most exciting model of an MFI in africa - unitus interview with founder ingrid munro ; unitus partnership news with JB and wholeplanetfoundation connecting microcredit and fair trade kenya cofffee; more on JB at the web resource I co-edit yunusafrica

Quotes from Munro:
Ms. Munro: To get out of the vicious cycle of
poverty, people do need more than just access
to finance. They also need insurance, education,
healthcare, housing—all the things that can help
them move up and out of this vicious cycle instead
of spiraling downward. Microfinance
needs to be combined with other programs to
help people get out of poverty. It must also be
stressed that microfinance should be about creating

I think
donors can play a very negative role here when
they push microfinance institutions too hard to
be profitable and demonstrate sustainability—interpreted
entirely as financial sustainability. This
measure of success often promotes dropping the
very poor to appear more successful since small
loans are always going to cost more to manage
and administer.

This appears to be a list of Yunus partners
Unitus Partners

Pro Mujer Pachuca, Mexico March-02 - branch or Pro Mujer, a venerable s. american microcredit that originated? in Bolivia
SKS Hyderabad, India March-03 claims to have gone from 10000 to 3+ million clients in under 6 years -one of the fastest scaling in mfi world - resources & discuss questions on SKS ownership model
Jamii Bora Trust Nairobi, Kenya July-04
ASA-GV Trichy, Tamil Nadu, India December-04
BSS Bangalore, India December-04
Bandhan Kolkata, West Bengal, India April05
Grameen Koota Bangalore, India April-05
* FIS Buenos Aires, Argentina February-06
Swadhaar Mumbai, India May-06
Ujjivan Bangalore, India May-06
Lifebank Iloilo, Philippines November-06
Credex Guadalajara, Mexico December-06
MBK Ventura Java, Indonesia December-06
Adhikar Bhubaneshwar, Orissa, India April-07
IIRM Tezpur, Assam, India April-07
MokshaYug Access Bagalkot, Karnataka, India August-07
Finsol Recife, Brazil November-07
Equitas Chennai, India November-07
Ajiwika Society Deoghar, Jharkhand, India January-08
Mimo Finance Uttarakhand, India January-08
Samhita Madhya Pradesh, India February-08
AMK Cambodia May-08
* Tujijenge Tanzania October-08

*= known to offer solar panel loans

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12.08.08 | Whole Planet Foundation™ and Unitus Join Forces to Accelerate Growth of Microfinance in Kenya
Three-year Partnership Aims to Reduce Global Poverty by Increasing Access to Microfinance in Communities Where Whole Foods Market® Sources Products

Seattle, WA and Austin, TX (December 4, 2008) — Unitus, Inc., an international nonprofit organization dedicated to reducing global poverty by accelerating access to microfinance, and Whole Planet Foundation, a Whole Foods Market foundation that funds microlending projects in communities where the Company sources products, today announced plans to fuel the growth of microfinance in the coffee-growing regions of Kenya. The partnership will leverage the foundation’s support to help Jamii Bora Trust, one of Kenya’s fastest growing microfinance institutions and a Unitus partner since 2003, expand into the rural coffee-growing regions of Central and Eastern provinces in Kenya. This project marks Whole Planet Foundation’s first entry into Africa and Unitus’s initial expansion into East Africa. Whole Planet Foundation microlending funds are not directed to Whole Foods Market suppliers, but rather to the poorest of the poor in the communities where these suppliers live and work.

With this combined support, Jamii Bora Trust will extend its reach into small farming communities through the latest mobile technology and develop new microfinance products specifically designed for rural farmers. Using existing telephone infrastructure, Jamii Bora Trust puts handheld POS (point of sale) devices in its branches throughout Kenya, allowing the institution to register new members on-site, immediately provide members with debit cards, and track banking transactions in real time. Through the use of this technology Jamii Bora Trust will increase its reach into rural coffee communities with financial tools coffee farmers need to support their businesses.

More than 25 million small-scale family coffee farmers around the world are dependent on their crop for survival. Kenya is the 17th largest producer of coffee in the world and an estimated six million people are employed in coffee growing and production industries. Without access to credit and other financial resources to stabilize income throughout a crop cycle, coffee farmers historically find themselves facing obstacles like the fluctuating global commodities market, climate change, political trends, and widespread rural poverty. With the support of Whole Planet Foundation and Unitus, Jamii Bora Trust will be able to provide life-changing financial services to nearly 80,000 microentrepreneurs and their families and intends to double its reach in the region by 2010.

“We are thrilled to partner with an organization that not only has a proven commitment to operating its business in a socially responsible manner, but is deeply committed to fighting poverty and increasing the impact of microfinance for millions of working poor,” said Ed Bland, President of Unitus. “By working together, Whole Planet Foundation, Unitus and Jamii Bora Trust can help spur the development of innovation in the field and ensure the power of microfinance reaches those who need it most.”

More than 2.5 billion people—nearly half the world’s population—live on less than two dollars a day, yet only 133 million people currently have access to microfinance services. Using a highly leveraged, impact-driven model, Unitus partners with high-potential microfinance institutions around the globe to connect them to the growth capital and innovative business tools they need to grow rapidly, strengthen their businesses, and reach those in need.

Fueled by the business acumen, innovation, and excellence of some of the brightest social entrepreneurs in the world, the Unitus network of microfinance partners aims to rapidly close the “poverty gap” and is currently providing access to financial services including microcredit loans, savings, and insurance products to more than six million of the world’s working poor. By partnering with Whole Foods Market and Whole Planet Foundation, Unitus will be able to support partners such as Jamii Bora Trust to expand, ensuring the poor have access to opportunities to build stronger families, better lives, and a brighter future.

“At Whole Planet Foundation, we believe in the power and creativity of the entrepreneurial spirit. Microfinance is a tangible and powerful way of supporting and fueling that spirit. By increasing people’s access to credit and other financial services, we can begin to foster wealth and prosperity in the emerging economies that need it most,” said Philip Sansone, President and Executive Director of Whole Planet Foundation. “Unitus was an obvious partner to help us expand microfinance in the communities that we support. As a ‘microfinance accelerator’ with experience on the ground in nine countries around the globe, Unitus has an approach that is high-powered, innovative, entrepreneurial, focused and smart. We are thrilled to partner with such a dedicated group of people to make a big difference.”

Whole Foods Market shoppers will have the opportunity to empower the poor through microcredit by donating at the registers at all U.S.-based stores during the Whole Planet Foundation Prosperity Campaign that runs from February 18 through March 31, 2009. One hundred percent of contributions will go to microlending projects in Africa, Asia, Latin America and the United States. For more information, please visit


About Unitus
Unitus, an international nonprofit organization, works to reduce global poverty by increasing access to life-changing microfinance services. We seek out and partner with young, high-potential microfinance institutions (MFIs), helping them build capacity, attract capital, and achieve exponential growth. Through this leveraged approach, Unitus seeks to empower millions of the world’s working poor while transforming the financial systems now left out of their reach.

The Unitus portfolio currently reaches more than 6 million families through 23 partners in India and Southeast Asia, East Africa, Mexico, and South America. Our goal is to reach more than 15 million of the world’s working poor by 2010.

Unitus has been featured in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, PBS, and National Public Radio. We received Fast Company magazine’s Social Capitalist award for 2006, 2007, and 2008, and were awarded the prestigious 4-star rating for sound fiscal management from Charity Navigator in 2007 and 2008. Unitus is a 501(c)3 with offices in Seattle, Washington and Bangalore, India. For more information, please visit

About Jamii Bora Trust
Jamii Bora Trust is a microlending organization which seeks to assist its members in getting out of poverty and building better lives for themselves and their families. Headquartered in Nairobi, Kenya, Jamii Bora Trust operates more than 100 branches across the country to reach its members with financial and social products and services. At the core of Jamii Bora Trust is a fundamental belief that any family, however poor or hopeless, is capable of getting itself out of poverty. Jamii Bora Trust takes a uniquely comprehensive approach to helping strengthen and utilize all the skills, determination, and hard work of the people of Kenya to build a better nation through better families. Jamii Bora Trust is one of the fastest growing microfinance institutions in Kenya and plans to reach a half million people by the end of 2009. For more information, please visit

About Whole Planet Foundation™
The mission of Whole Planet Foundation is to create economic partnerships through microcredit with the poor in communities that supply Whole Foods Market stores with products, with a focus on the developing world. Microlending funds are not directed to Whole Foods Market suppliers, but rather to the poorest of the poor in the communities where these suppliers live and work. In 2006, Whole Planet Foundation began operations with a multi-country partnership with Nobel Laureate Muhammad Yunus, a pioneer of microcredit, and Grameen Trust. Since then, Whole Planet Foundation has directed $4.5 million to microlending projects supporting more than 22,500 impoverished individuals in Costa Rica, East Timor, Ethiopia, Guatemala, Honduras, India, Indonesia, Kenya, Nepal, Nicaragua and the United States. Whole Planet Foundation follows a multi-stakeholder model in its outreach, operations and financing. Whole Planet Foundation partners include microfinance institutions, leveraging partners and Whole Foods Market team members, customers and vendors. For more information, please visit
G V M to launch 155 branches by Dec 09

Non Banking Finance Company plans expansion

Press Trust of India / Chennai May 01, 2008

Tiruchy-based Grama Vidiyal Microfinance (GVM), a non-banking finance company (NBFC) which started its operations a year back plans to increase its branches from the current 100 to 225. The micro finance company has set a target of Rs 1,500 crore as outstanding for the year 2008-09.

Speaking to reporters in Chennai on Thursday, S Devaraj, chairman and managing director and Arjun Muralidharan, chief executive officer, Grama Vidiyal Microfinance Company said that company's target is to increase client base to 5.85 lakh in 2008-09 from 2.5 lakh. Credit target for the year 2008-09 is about Rs 500 crore.

Devaraj said GVM's capital increased to Rs 17.4 crore, after the company received Rs 14.7 crore as private equity investment from US-based Unitus Equity Fund L.P. (UEF) and Vinod Khosla, a venture capitalist and former general partner Kleiner Perkins.

Speaking about GVM's expansion plan Devaraj said that GVMFC operates out of 18 districts in Tamil Nadu. By December 2009, the company will open branches in Andhra Pradesh followed by branches in north India

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