Can women microentrepreneurs be social entrepreneurs?
October 27, 2010
by Erica Dorn, Contributor
Starting this week, this space will focus on microfinance sector and the changing role of women in the industry. To kick off our microfinance series, we feature a post from Erica Dorn, Manager of Kiva and Volunteer Partnerships at ACCION USA. Don't forget to check out Loans for Growth tomorrow, NYWSE’s microfinance panel featuring industry leaders and innovators!
While most female microentrepreneurs do not intentionally incite a wake of social change, my experiences in the microfinance sector have strengthened my belief in their ability to transform communities.
I recently met Maria, a NYC Green Cart vendor who had just given birth to her third child. She had been approved for a microloan to purchase inventory for her fresh produce cart in the South Bronx. In addition to the motherly glow in her eyes, Maria was ecstatic about the success of her new business venture. Her efforts and business acumen have made fruits and vegetables accessible to a low-income community that once lacked options for fresh produce.
Maria would not consider herself a social entrepreneur, but she closely fits the description as her family’s breadwinner, role model to her children and go-to woman for juicy mangoes or crisps carrots!
In 2006, Erica began a community project based in Brooklyn that fundraised for redevelopment in New Orleans; it was through this that she found her passion for localized development initiatives. Following her interest in Domestic Microfinance she served as Kiva’s first U.S. based fellow at ACCION USA in New York City before assuming her current position at ACCION USA. Find her on twitter @eldorn.
For a link to the article click HERE.