The Foundation for International Community Assistance (FINCA International) is a non-profit, microfinance organization, founded by John Hatch in 1984. Sometimes referred to as the "World Bank for the Poor" and a "poverty vaccine for the planet",
FINCA is the innovator of the village banking methodology in microcredit and is widely regarded as one of the pioneers of modern day microfinance. With its headquarters in Washington, D.C., FINCA has 21 affiliated host-country institutions (affiliates), in Latin America, the Caribbean, Africa, Eastern Europe, the Caucasus and Central Asia. Along with Grameen Bank and Accion International, FINCA is considered to be one of the most influential microfinance organizations in the world.
FINCA International Mission
The mission of FINCA International is to provide "financial services to the world's lowest-income entrepreneurs so they can create jobs, build assets, and improve their standard of living".
Today, FINCA's mission reaches out to over 740,000 clients worldwide. In an ambitious push forward, it aims to expand its outreach to over one million clients by the end of 2010.
According to Rupert Scofield, FINCA's President and CEO, "women have historically proved to be better credit risks, as they tend to be more responsible, perhaps from having to take care of the children. And frankly, they tend to be more creative and risk-taking than the men. Because they manage the household money, they know where the returns are in the marketplace on any given day."
In the microfinance industry, FINCA is known for reaching the very poorest market segments, particularly women. As of December 2008, women comprised 70 percent of its small loan clients.
The countries that FINCA operates are as shown below;
• Africa: DR Congo (Founded in 2003), Malawi (Founded in 1994), Tanzania (Founded in 1998), Uganda (Founded in 1992), Zambia (Founded in 2001)
• Latin America and...