Posts Tagged ‘united states’

Lagat an Olympian – This Time for America

July 2, 2008

EUGENE, OR – Bernard Lagat said he took every word seriously when he recited the oath that made him a U.S. citizen. Maybe that’s why the smile was so wide when he finally became an U.S. Olympian, as well.

Lagat won the grueling 5,000-meter race Monday night at U.S. Olympic trials, taking the next step on a journey that began in the sands of his native Kenya and reached its high point on a college track in Eugene, Ore.

Make that one high point. The Beijing Olympics are coming next.

”This is a dream come true,” Lagat said. ”This is very special running tonight. Now, I’m part of the USA going to Beijing. I’m very excited.” (more…)

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Grameen Banking (microcredit) Reaches the USA

June 30, 2008

Grameen Bank, the microcredit financier that was initially set up to help the poorest in Bangladesh, has recently opened its first branch in the United States.

Nobel Prize Laureate and Grameen Bank founder, Muhammad Yunus, originally introduced microcredit financing in 1976. He made his very first loan of 27 dollars from his own pocket, to 42 craftsmen in a village in Bangladesh, saying they could pay it back when they could afford to. Usually, the poor are unable to obtain credit but when they can, they are then charged exorbitant rates of interest. Grameen charges borrowers about 15 per cent a year and requires no collateral. It does not make its recipients sign a legally enforceable contract but rather models its business on trust. (more…)

Africans Living Better Lives Through U.S. Development Foundation

June 9, 2008

Washington — Women, youth and the disabled in 18 African nations are living better lives and realizing their dreams of economic self-sufficiency, while also strengthening their countries’ economies, with the help of the U.S. African Development Foundation (USADF).

USADF President Lloyd Pierson told America.gov recently that the ideas for the foundation’s small and medium-size enterprise development projects come directly from the Africans themselves.

“We don’t go in and say, ‘Here is what you should be doing.’ We want those ideas to come from the local community — for Africans to say, ‘Here is what we want to do.’ Suggestions,” he said, “could come from an entrepreneur within that community” or from a group. It is grassroots, rural-focused development at the community level, he said.

USADF has local nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) working as business development officers to help it carry out its development programs, Pierson noted.

“They search out for opportunities and are constantly seeking ways to build up from the grassroots level to spur economic growth and development,” he explained.

(more…)