FINCA International was founded in 1984 on the radical notion that giving small loans to the poor has the power to transform entire communities in a sustainable way. After impacting tens of millions of lives with responsible financial services, the organization widened its focus to catalyze further economic growth and alleviate poverty in underserved markets around the world. It remains boldly committed to market-based solutions, and is supporting the rise of social enterprises delivering basic service and financial innovation to help low-income families and communities achieve a better standard of living.
A 2018 grant from the Cultures of Resistance Network supported FINCA’s overarching programs, including BrightLife, FINCA Ventures, and FINCA Forward. BrightLife works to make life-enhancing products, such as solar home systems and clean cookstoves, accessible and affordable to the poor. With FINCA Ventures, FINCA partners with social entrepreneurs who have innovative solutions to the basic service needs of low-income families. FINCA Forward is a two-year pilot program that aims to test the hypothesis that bringing early-stage fintechs and financial institutions together in a proof-of-concept environment can help small and growing businesses overcome the pioneer gap and enable microfinance institutions and banks to affordably and systematically onboard emerging fintech innovations that will expand reach to underserved and underbanked populations.