The First MicroFinance Bank Afghanistan; Mibanco of Peru; and Cooperative Tosepantomin of Mexico Announced as Finalists for European Microfinance Award on Microfinance for Housing
On the 27th of September, the Selection Committee for the European Microfinance Award 2017, on “Microfinance for Housing”, composed of members of the Luxembourg Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs, European Microfinance Platform (e-MFP) and Inclusive Finance Network Luxembourg (InFiNe.lu), chose the three finalists who will go on to compete for the €100,000 prize: The First MicroFinance Bank Afghanistan; Mibanco of Peru; and Cooperative Tosepantomin of Mexico.
This year, the Award highlights the role of microfinance in supporting access to better quality residential housing for vulnerable, low income and financially excluded groups with no or limited access to housing finance in the mainstream sector. This problem is multi-dimensional: sub-standard housing is not just an identifier of poverty, but rather it is the cause of a host of developmental problems. Exposure to the elements, poor ventilation, and insufficient arrangements for basic hygiene are major causes of poor health. Improper building structures undermine safety and increase vulnerability to disaster. Lack of lighting and sufficient space limits children’s ability to study. Insufficient privacy and lack of toilet facilities contribute to sexual assault and constrain opportunities for women and girls. And lack of clear property rights are major contributors to crime and social injustice, while limiting families’ ability to invest in better housing.
Photo courtesy of Anoto AB.