Stephen A. Vogel,
Chief Executive Officer
1460 Broadway, 8th Floor
NPO Spotlight -
To help women who live in poverty build small businesses to create better lives for their families.
About the Organization:
Founded by Nobel Peace Prize laureate Muhammad Yunus, Grameen America offers microloans, training, and other support to help transform communities and fight poverty in the United States. As of the spring of 2013, the organization had made 39,900 microloans to 15,250 women in 152 communities, who received a total of $77.3 million in microloans to start small businesses and deposited a total of $1 million in savings.
Based on a microfinance model Yunus developed at Grameen Bank, the program invites women who are interested in starting a business to form groups of five to receive financial training. Each group member then opens a savings account, takes out a microloan of $1,500 to launch a small business in her community, and meets weekly with her group and a Grameen America staff member to make loan and savings payments, continue her financial education, and build peer networks. With repayment of the microloan and continued peer support, the women become eligible to receive larger loans to invest in and expand their businesses.
Visitors to the site can read the blog, sign up for the newsletter, or explore how the organization's impact has grown since 2008 on an interactive map that shows the cumulative number of women served and total amount invested nationally by year, as well as the number of women served, number of loans made, and total amount invested in each metropolitan area. They also can learn how to start a fundraising campaign, make an online donation, or browse the calendar of events.
Grameen America is supported by individuals, foundations, and corporations.