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India has over 1.2 billion inhabitants. The average life expectancy is 67 and 415 different living languages are spoken. Although a little over half of the workforce is employed in agriculture, the service sector is the most important source of economic growth. The main long-term challenges are: poverty, limited physical and social infrastructure, limited employment opportunities outside of agriculture, limited access to quality education and facilitating migration from the countryside to cities.

Meet Kumari


Kumari (45 years old) lives in the Indian village of Yerragudipalli with her husband, son and two daughters. Both Kumari and her husband are illiterate. The family begged for money by making street music to earn a livelihood.


Kumari invested her microcredit in 600 saris, which she is now selling on the local market. Kumari used the first profit she made to buy two sacks of rice and medicine for her children.


HEARDS is a local NGO, founded in 1999 and is mainly working around Chittoor in Andah Pradesh. HEARDS and Microcredit for Mothers co-operate since 2016. Both the women as the children in the centres were visited by Microcredit for Mothers. The unique procedure of HEARDS, combine microcredit with education for children, is a very important pillar in the co-operation.

Organization for Community Development (OCD)

The team of OCD consists of 9 staff members. Besides that almost every week 28 volunteers are working for OCD: women who are mobilizing communities, taking care of banking acces for the population, enterpreneurship, leadership and local knowledge development about microcredit. The volunteers play a crucial role in the development programmes for women and children and also act as intermediairs between the communities and the OCD project team.

Rural Action in Development Society (RAIDS)

Rural Action in Development Society (RAIDS) supports the very poorest in the Kadapa District, the poorest in the state of Andhra Pradesh. They specifically focus on improving the position of untouchables and nomadic communities. RAIDS’s projects ensure that these target groups get access to basic services such as water, electricity, shelter and education as well as a chance to earn their own living by stimulating their entrepreneurship. RAIDS provides micro credits to realize this goal.


The co-operation between Sanghamithra and Microcredit for Mothers dates back to 2008. Sanghamithra has close ties to development organization Myrada, an organization which has mainly focused on supporting female sex workers. As a result of unemployment and poverty, these women often see this as the only way to feed their children. Together, Sanghamithra and Myrada support these women through self-help groups and a combination of credits, health care trainings and actively working towards their emancipation. This approach ensures that these women don’t only learn how to set up and run a profitable business, but also to become more independent and autonomous.


Sanghamithra keeps interest rates low and provides loans using the Reducing Balance Method: the women only pay interest over the part of the loan that is still outstanding. We are very proud of the fact that Sanghamithra has won the award for India’s best microfinance institution two years in a row!

Women’s Organization in Rural Development

WORD is settled in the Namakkal district and is a registered non-governmental organization working on the improvement of life circumstances of the rural population, mainly women and children. WORD is established in 1985 by Mrs. Shanthi and a group of service-oriented women. WORD is focussing on human programmes: health, education, environment and development.


We have been working with Sarala, a microcredit organization founded by Arabinda Sinha, an idealistic Indian American professor, since August 2010. He wanted to reach the very poorest people in and around Calcutta, an area not covered by other microcredits providers. However, after a few months they found out that these extremely poor women form a high-risk target group and that, as a result, funds and banks are reluctant to provide Sarala with loans for their benefit. Sarala was thus forced to support creditworthy women.


Partly due to this Sarala became a professional and self supplying organization. Thanks to the co-operation with Microcredit for Mothers Sarala now do have the possibility to approach the poorest women. Together with their knowledge and effective working methods and the fund of Microcredit for Mothers we are continuing to support women in the slums of Calcutta in the coming years, Arabinda's dream!


Since 1989 Ropes acts as NGO to improve the lifes of women and children on the fringes of society. Besides microcredit, Ropes is concentrating on child rights, health training and other activities focussed on the social economic situation of discriminated women and children. We are working with Ropes since 2014.

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