It’s a blistering hot day. A child runs by you, nearly naked, his skin smeared with mud and powdered by dust, his bare feet pattering down a road littered with garbage.

Under the shady branches of a mango tree sits an ebony faced woman, fanning herself, rearranging the countless pieces of gum and candies she has for sale in a deteriorating wooden briefcase.

drfamily.jpgYou look over your shoulder. Now you see a lightly-framed man atop a rickety old bicycle, his face worn by years in the sun. He pedals slowly towards you, dragging behind him a cart full of brightly colored peppers, squashes, carrots and eggplant.

Now you look forward, and you realize that on just this one road people are running all types of businesses’ they offer candies, vegetables, used clothing, tires, gasoline by the quart, you realize that you can change the faces, and you can change the country, but the micro enterprises you see on this very road, and the poverty you feel are commonplace to at least 90% of the world’s population. The very thought that so many people live so meagerly bears heavy on your heart, but then you realize that although their businesses are small and they are poor, these people are using their skills and creativity to make a living, and that they have the same potential to succeed as you do, the only difference is that they do not have the same access that you do, to education and credit.

drkids.jpgIn today’s world, in a modern and developed world, credit is an undeniable necessity. To say that credit has played a central role in the development of the richest nations, companies and entrepreneurs is indisputable. But what about the poor nations, the 90% of the world who lives outside of that “developed” realm of life? We talk and debate year after year about how we can help our worlds poor, how we can eradicate hunger, how we can lift the poor out of poverty—and as we spin in circles trying to find the answers, we forget that the answer is actually very simple, that the answer lies in the potential and abilities of each individual out there, that it is not us, the “rich” who are going to change their lives, but rather they themselves. The vast majority of the poor are intelligent and creative individuals, individuals that when given basic skills and tools that the “developed” world has at their fingertips, prove that they too can excel as entrepreneurs, and productive members of their societies.

At, we believe that micro credit, the extension of small and manageable amounts of credit, and business training to the worlds poor is a dignifying, sustainable, and realistic way of alleviating poverty and extending the opportunity to a better future to our world’s less fortunate.

We invite you to read more, and to share your thoughts on how we can use this wonderful tool to make our world a better place. If you are interested in helping out, there are a couple ways to help:

  • If you know anyone passionate about microfinance, let them know about
  • For those who are interested in contributing as authors, please see our “Write for” page.
  • Spread the word with your blog or other social network

About Kayla Villnow

Kayla Villnow rejoined the Esperanza family in 2011 after completing her MBA at the University of Washington. Prior to graduate school, Kayla worked as the Communications and Marketing Director of Esperanza in the Dominican Republic, and in donor relations with the Lucile Packard Foundation for Children’s Health. Currently based out of Dallas, Texas and oversees all of Esperanza’s development work in the Central and Western Regions of the United States.