A few weeks ago, .famvin author Fr. Pat Griffin and Ladies of Charity-USA President Mary Ann Dantuono celebrated with the members of GLOBE, a microloan program, as they made their final presentations this semester.
GLOBE, which stands for Global Loan Opportunities for Budding Entrepreneurs, is a student-managed academic program which provides loans to entrepreneurs in the developing world. Offered through St. John’s University Peter J. Tobin College of Business, students are educated about the world of microfinance while helping the poorest of the poor help themselves and their families out of poverty.
GLOBE currently operates in six countries, including Democratic Republic of the Congo, Kenya, Nicaragua, Nigeria, Vietnam and the Philippines, and has connections with Daughters of Charity in six other countries, including Bolivia, Ghana, Mozambique, Madagascar, Peru, and Thailand.
According to the St. John’s website:
GLOBE Students manage all aspects of the program including vetting loan applications, marketing the program, tracking funds flows, fundraising, providing technology to the field, and measuring program success. Student management permits a low-cost administrative structure with very little overhead costs. This allows us to ensure that at least 95 cents of every donated dollar goes directly to our borrowers and related student fieldwork.
GLOBE Communities include the developing nations where loans are destined, the University community in which the program is lodged, and civil society with whom we share common interests and values in creating positive and transformative change in the world.
GLOBE Entrepreneurs, many of them women, engage in micro-enterprises, the profits from which allow them to support their families and educate their children. Loan fees attached to the loan payback serve future borrower needs as well as local community needs such as books, clean water, and medical supplies. These loan fees, at 3%- 5% on a declining balance method, compare very favorably with other microfinance programs charging interest of anywhere between 18% and 35%, and sometimes more.
GLOBE Partners, the Daughters of Charity, act as field partners and identify worthy loan candidates, make recommendations, disseminate funds and collect loan repayments in an ongoing effort to reduce poverty and distress in the communities in which they work.
Source: St. John’s University Website