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Pro Mujer

Background:
In 1990 Pro Mujer committed themselves to helping the poorest women in Bolivia achieve economic and social well-being. The micro-finance and women’s development network offers credit, access to savings accounts, health care, and business training, thus empowering women to increase their income and claim their basic human rights. To do so, Pro Mujer also has the support of people doing microfinance and women’s development internship.

Pro Mujer’s is now operating in four countries as well as Bolivia: Nicaragua (1996), Peru (1999), Mexico (2001) and Argentina (2005). Since 1990, Pro Mujer’s microfinance institutions have disbursed over $383 million in small loans (the average is $225) and provided healthcare for thousands of women throughout Latin America.

Objectives:
Pro Mujer teaches women how to secure a steady income through microfinance, business training and healthcare support. By providing financial and human development services, Pro Mujer fights poverty and empowers women to become active members of society. Pro Mujer also provides health care support to women and their families, and links them to other services in the community.

Who does Pro Mujer help?
Pro Mujer helps some of the poorest women in Bolivia, Nicaragua, Peru, Mexico, and Argentina. It currently serves about 193,000 women and an estimated 965,000 children and extended family members. $140 million in loans are expected to be dispersed in 2008.

In 2007 Pro Mujer served over 99,500 women in Bolivia who, in total, have a savings power of $7,555,000. Pro Mujer has offices in El Alto, La Paz, Cochabamba, Sucre, Tarija, Santa Cruz, Potosi, Oruro, Trinidad and Riberalta, and is regarded as Bolivia’s flagship microfinance institution.

Working Conditions:
Pro Mujer’s main office is a fifteen-minute bus ride from the Cochabamba city center. There are also eight smaller centers spread across the city, which volunteers may attend. Pro Mujer works in eight out of nine Bolivian departments, all of which are all closely knitted together. On occasion volunteers may be sent to one of the partner offices.

PRO MUJER Programs

  • Loans of up to $4000
  • Training for young entrepreneurs to help start their own business
  • Proving healthcare at $0.50 a month, offering women and their families with primary services including PAP tests for early cancer detection, STD tests, vaccinations, and pediatrics
  • Computer training, English lessons, reading, writing and arithmetic for children
  • A day care center
  • Legal support

Volunteer/ Internship requirements:

  • Advanced Spanish
  • Experience and/or knowledge in microfinance, business, training, marketing or health
  • Ability to work independently as well as within a group
  • Minimum commitment period of three months