Adelante Foundation

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Adelante Foundation

Project Stage:
$500,000 - $1 million
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

Adelante's primary mission is to empower poor women in rural areas of Honduras to start up or expand their own small businesses. This enables them to improve the standard of living of themselves and their whole family. We achieve this by making small loans and providing bi-monthly business education lessons.

About Project

Problem: What problem is this project trying to address?

In Honduras, 67% of the country's 8.2 million population lives below the poverty line while the country has one of the most unequal income distributions in the world. Hondurans suffer from underemployment rates of over 50%. Rural Hondurans face poverty with much greater prevalence than urbanized Hondurans. Just under half of Hondurans live in rural areas but 72% of the rural population lives in poverty. The neglect that rural Hondurans endure from governments results in the continuation of poverty in rural communities. Further, studies have found women to experience poverty more intensely than men, leaving women to hold the greatest burden.

Solution: What is the proposed solution? Please be specific!

Adelante focuses its integrative microfinance-education program in rural areas of Honduras and over 99% of clients are women. We provide them with small loans to invest in their micro-businesses so that they and their families can enjoy an improved standard of living. Our combination of small business loans and business development education ensures our clients become successful micro-entrepreneurs. The majority of our loan pool is dedicated to our solidarity group loan product. Clients do not need to own a home or have another form of collateral; instead the pressure involved in the solidarity group loan structure affords eligibility to those who need it most. Once a client develops a solid credit history they become eligible for individual business and home improvement loans.
Impact: How does it Work

Example: Walk us through a specific example(s) of how this solution makes a difference; include its primary activities.

Aida Zulema is an example of one Adelante client who has seen a dramatic increase in economic opportunities since taking out her first loan five years ago. Although her children are older, she is now responsible for raising two grandchildren as her own and is also partially responsible for three more. With the help of Adelante, Aida began her own convenience store after selling lottery tickets in local communities for more than 25 years. Although she continues to travel to sell lottery tickets on the weekends, she is grateful that she and her husband have a steadier source of income with the grocery store. Her husband helps her with the store and also grows vegetable local crops to feed his family. Her first loan was for about $26.00 and her eleventh, most current loan is for about $633.00. The growth that Aida has experienced demonstrates that many women only require very small loan amounts in order to get started on a successful business venture and expand the economic opportunities for their family. Aida’s story is only one from the over 6,000 clients Adelante currently serves and 54,983 clients since beginning in 2000.

Marketplace: Who else is addressing the problem outlined here? How does the proposed project differ from these approaches?

Adelante's competition includes 23 other microfinance institutions that operate within Honduras. We take pride in maintaining our focus on poor rural women, who have less access to economic advancement than others in Honduras. Due to our own commitment to maintaining our mission, Adelante considers it to be a disadvantage to us and to all microfinance institutions when one institution operates irresponsibly. This behavior reduces the confidence that we have built in our own clients and the overall perception of microfinance around the world.