Without us, many LGBTI people would not be able to access credit to start a small business because of their history of family rejection, isolation, poverty and discrimination in education and employment. Making LGBTI people unattractive clients to financial institutions and they remain financially excluded.
Since 2012, MRI has been developing, testing and fine-tuning an innovative micro-finance model. The model reaches those in the LGBTI community who live in poverty and destitution.
The model enables LGBTI people to access credit to start a small business. Without MRI, many LGBTI people would not be able to access credit because of their history of family rejection, isolation, poverty and discrimination in education and employment. This history makes LGBTI people unattractive clients to financial institutions and they remain financially excluded.
In many countries, LGBTI people are financially excluded because:
they do not have a guarantor – which is usually a family member or friend, but LGBTI people have been rejected by these people and become extremely isolated;
they already have too many debts – because of the rejection they have faced, LGBTI people borrow money from street lenders to survive
they do not have any guarantee – leaving home and schooling at a young age means that LGBTI people cannot accumulate any assets (e.g. a motorbike, or a piece of land) to offer as a guarantee.
Without MRI, many LGBTI people would not be able to access the credit they need to set up an income generating activity to step out of poverty.
In partnership with local organisations, MRI can:
facilitate micro-credit to impoverished LGBTI people in Cambodia
facilitate start-up capital to LGBTI refugees in the UK
MRI’s micro-finance model can be adapted and replicated in other countries. It is a model that not only improves peoples’ lives, but it also contributes to strengthening LGBTI rights.
The article explains why LGBTI people in Cambodia are financially excluded and why they become or stay poor. It also explains what MRI is doing to ensure that LGBTI people can access micro-finance products to step out of poverty.
MRI visited and consulted with the LGBTI community in Somroung Yong district, which is part of the Takeo Province to tackle poverty of LGBTI people by providing technical support and financial assistance.