Micro Enterprise Global Fellowship
Micro Enterprise Global Fellowship
The Micro Enterprise Global Fellowship is a yearlong fellowship for individuals interested in microfinance and microenterprise in the developing world. The fellowship is ideal for those with educational or practical background in microfinance, microenterprise, agriculture, fundraising and/or international development. However, all interested individuals with a college degree are encouraged to apply. Applicants should be flexible self-starters who possess an enthusiasm for development work.
Village HopeCore International is a nonprofit organization registered in Kenya and the United States with a mission to eradicate poverty and improve the health and living conditions of the Wameru people of Chogoria, Kenya. In 2000, HopeCore began a unique and innovative poverty eradication project that combines a Grameen-style micro enterprise village bank with an adult education program and a village-level health care program. To date, HopeCore has funded over 800 individuals.
The Micro Enterprise Program combines small loans with business and financial literacy training. Loan clients also receive health training and medical services. HopeCore’s training program sets the nonprofit apart from other microfinancing organizations by recognizing that money alone does not lift people out of poverty. Training and education empower people to make informed decisions about their finances and health. This unique combination of micro loans, business and health trainings has helped HopeCore achieve a 99% loan repayment rate. HopeCore loan clients experience an increase in income and decrease in illness.
The Micro Enterprise Global Fellow is a key member of the Micro Enterprise Team. (S)he works closely with the rest of the team to improve and streamline both the micro lending and training programs. Specific duties include data collection and analysis, managing the HopeCore website and social media, and grant-writing. The Micro Enterprise Fellow also manages that greenhouse lending program. These duties enable the fellow to travel to surrounding villages to visit loan clients at their homes and businesses.
The Micro Enterprise Global Fellowship started in 2012. There has been one Micro Enterprise Global Fellow. Read about previous Micro Enterprise Fellows.
Compensation and Lodging
VHI provides a $500 monthly stipend to the fellow. The stipend is designed to cover all lodging and living expenses in Chogoria as well as travel expenses and health insurance expenses. HopeCore will arrange for a safe and secure apartment for the fellow in our local hospital’s compound. The apartment is furnished with a full bathroom, cooking facilities and a refrigerator. Rent is approximately $50 each month and is paid out of the $500 monthly stipend. Food costs in the village should run about $60 per month. It is required that, for the fellow’s own protection, each fellow must have health insurance. The fellow will be responsible for transportation costs to and from Kenya. Roundtrip airfare from the west coast of the US to Nairobi is around $2000, less expensive from the east coast. The fellow will receive four weeks of vacation during the fellowship. The $500 per month stipend should cover all of the fellow’s transportation expenses getting to Kenya, all of the living expenses while in Chogoria and most if not all the cost of health insurance while in Kenya. The stipend is designed to allow a fellow to spend a year in Kenya without having to incur additional loans.
Application and Selection Process
The application and selection process involves three stages. In the first stage, applicants e-mail a one page cover letter, stating the reasons for their interest in our fellowship, and a CV to firstname.lastname@example.org. In the second stage, competitive applicants will be interviewed over the phone. Following the phone interviews, a group of finalists will be selected. In the third stage, the finalists will have an in-person interview (or phone interview if geography prohibits an in-person interview). References will be obtained at this time. All finalists will be able to have a phone conversation with the current Micro Enterprise Fellow.