Freedom from Hunger Recognized for Impact

Freedom from Hunger has been ranked #5 among international microfinance organizations in a new study by Philanthropedia (a division of Guidestar USA, Inc.). The study surveyed 72 microfinance experts, evaluating 119 international microfinance organizations and recognizing 11 organizations that are making the biggest positive impact in international micro finance.

“We are delighted to be considered in such esteemed company,” commented Freedom from Hunger President, Steve Hollingworth. “We know both through our interactions with the women that we serve and through our rigorous program evaluations, that we are making a difference in the lives of some of the world's poorest women. For an organization of our size, to have our work recognized by a panel of our microfinance peers means a great deal to us.”

Since 1988, Freedom from Hunger has been an advocate for integrated (or value-added) microfinance. Integrated microfinance pairs financial services with other social services, such as education or access to health care. This year alone, Freedom from Hunger is reaching more than 4.4 million women in 20 countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America with practical adult education programs. These programs are delivered through partner microfinance institutions (MFIs) and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to their members during regular microfinance group meetings.

Education modules promote better health and nutrition practices and help participants to grow their businesses and manage their money more effectively. Since illness ranks among the leading reasons people cannot escape poverty and chronic hunger, Freedom from Hunger's Microfinance and Health Protection (MAHP) program offers access to healthcare services and medicines.

“It's important to note,” Hollingworth continued, “that six of the eleven organizations recognized are active proponents or practitioners of integrated microfinance–including four of the top six. We see this as a very positive indicator that the sector as a whole is refocusing to achieve its social mission by embracing an integrated approach.”

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