Chapter 11   ···   Previous  ·  Next  ·  Home

Microcredit—The Financial Revolution

“Women’s empowerment is always, always about more than bettering the lives of individual women.... It’s about making sure that every woman and girl everywhere has the opportunities that she deserves to fulfill her potential as a mother, as a worker, as a human being.” —Hillary Clinton, U.S. Secretary of State

The power to start and grow a business can raise a woman’s status at home and in society, while boosting confidence and improving lives, including the health of her entire family. In addition to microcredit, there are microinsurance initiatives, where members make small contributions, pool funds, and share the burden of health costs. Micro-insurance can range from grassroots efforts—a group of individuals deciding they want to form a health fund—to health initiatives by credit unions or microfinance institutions. But the result is the same—better access to health care for all.

Our View from the Ground

Photo of Bethany Cole Senior Program Associate Bethany Cole takes us back to her experience as a former microcredit volunteer in Cameroon.
Read more >


The percentage of loans made by Grameen Bank that are to women. The loan recovery rate is also nearly 98%.
Source: Grameen Bank