In an effort to break the cycle of poverty in Memphis, a government organization is using conditional cash transfers, paying students if they earn good grades and adults if they maintain a full-time job.Read More
An innovative program by an unusual bank allows low-income people in Cambodia to take out a 15-year fixed mortgage with little or no documentation - contradicting traditional loan assumptions and creating means for some of the country's poorest people to completely change their lives. The bank and its investors are now making a profit, and more than 700 mortgages and building loans have been provided.Read More
In India, many farmers, especially women farmers, have transitioned to organic farming. While it requires a serious set of skills and knowledge, organic farming increases yields and decreases costs by eliminating the need to buy pesticides. The move is both ecological and economical, and the Indian government is trying to spread the solution.Read More
More Than Wheels, a New Hampshire-based non-profit offers an economically stable solution to the high cost of owning a car. The program offers low-cost car loans that go toward the purchase of fuel-efficient vehicles.Read More
A non-traditional program called the Family Independence Initiative (F.I.I.), uses a radically different approach from the traditional American social service model to empower entire families alleviate themselves from poverty. The results in multiple states thus far have been so striking, that this model of self-sufficiency may be able to have a significant impact reducing poverty nationwide.Read More
Lotteries aren’t usually considered part of the solution to a savings crisis experienced across America, particularly by the nation's poor, but with more hopefuls purchasing lottery tickets than setting aside rainy day funds, one organization, Doorways to Dreams, is working to change federal and state laws to allow banks to offer prize-linked savings. In Michigan, the programs have seen some success.Read More
Agencies across the corporate, government, and nonprofit sectors are recruiting ideas from the public by offering prizes for solving challenges. Prize incentives have spurred innovation for centuries, but fell out of favor as the preferred method in the 1800s. Now, prize-based incentives are back, in part because of a flood of new philanthropic money, and because prizes cast a wider net to a largely more educated and tech-savvy global population.Read More
For millions of students who could succeed in college, the limiting factor is money. Is it possible to finance higher education the way we finance start-up companies? A company called Lumni uses “human capital contracts” to offer loans for students contingent upon 14 percent of the student's salary for 118 months after graduation. There are risks to this approach and not a lot of years or data available to be sure of its efficacy, but results are promising already—with a default rate under 3 percent.Read More
At a time when university students lack opportunities and financial help to test their innovative business ideas, the Resolution Project supports higher education students who have ideas for socially responsible businesses and charities. Resolution offers small awards to start businesses as well as mentor opportunities that enable networking and business collaboration with experts.Read More
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