We would like to extend a heartfelt THANK YOU for supporting ADC in 2017 - for attending events, sharing our story with friends, donating to appeals, and getting behind our #BackAWoman campaign. A special thanks goes to our wonderful regular donors - your support really is the lifeblood of ADC that allows us to empower people to lift themselves and their families out of poverty.
In 2017, our Myanmar partner ZMF Bank has continued to thrive and provide affordable credit to thousands of entrepreneurs in some of Myanmar's poorest communities. 2,027 loans were made, totalling $472,500. 86% of these loans were to women.
Our growth last year shows the power of microfinance in action. Each time a loan is repaid, the money can be loaned out again to a new deserving client with big business dreams.
Microfinance is a lifeline in communities like Kalaymyo, Myanmar (where ZMF Bank operates), because of otherwise prohibitive interest rates. Many people are forced to turn to loan sharks and pawn shops, where interest rates can exceed a frightening 200% per annum. This is a prohibitive cost to starting a sustainable small-scale business for most people. ADC's micro loans give skilled, enterprising communities another option.
Here are some highlights from the Myanmar project in 2017:
Here in New Zealand, we celebrated some great highlights in 2017: