Social Entreprise: Micro Credit

Muhammad Yunus was made a Nobel Prize winner in 2006 and had been honoured by the world Press for his deeds. What can we learn from his action and drive in the Grameen Bank in Bangladesh which we could copy here in Mauritius? Micro Credit may well be a remedy to the “casseur” plague that some of the under privileged of Mauritius are suffering from. According to INSEAD: Social enterprise, Using micro credit to help to lift the poor out of poverty is still posting dramatic growth. In China, this idea had been used for centuries. Even in the early days of the arrival of Chinese traders in Mauritius, they had the same cooperative union system amongst themselves.

Kashf is an example of lesson learned from Yunus. It’s a non-profit organization which has been posting dramatic growth while focusing on providing micro credit and social support services to women entrepreneurs at the bottom of the so-called wealth pyramid.

Since its launch in 1996, Kashf has grown to become the third-largest microfinance institution in Pakistan with some 69 branches, more than 135,000 customers and about 90 million US dollars in outstanding loans.

Today, I spoke to Dharamjeet Bucktowar who has been involved with credit union for years in Mauritius. He told me that micro financing is progressing. The cooperative movement gives support to any group wanting to operate a micro finance project. However, he would have expected a much greater expansion of the cooperative movement. I am pleased to learn that Caritas is still involved in promoting this type of Social Enterprise. The funds available in the Paroisse de Ste Therese which I saw the inception now runs in million of Rupees. This is thanks to the motivation of the leaders and the able management of a few willing contributors.

Why not teach credit union at school and start a model credit union at the University of Mauritius? I would suggest to Dharamjeet to start Credit Union in all tertiary institutions of the country as a practicing ground.These students would certainly learn first hand to enhance their leadership,organizational,managerial,and communications skills.