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Sunday, March 27, 2011

Muhammad Yunus Ways


Muhammad Yunus, 67 years old, 2006 Nobel Peace Prize winner. His story is extraordinary or I would say his ‘change the world into a better place’ story is more like Disney story rather than an actual real life story. I put his story into my blog was not because his story was islamicly inspired necessarily, but because he is a Muslim and he has made a great achievement. 

But, nonetheless his story was ultimately and definitely inspires me, and I hope someday I can do something similar here in my own country Indonesia. Where I see it there are many similarities between my country and his country Bangladesh. Especially many of Indonesian people is poor.
He made a business which he called “social business” which started initially in Bangladesh. Which I think in some way is similar or the answer to the creative capitalism of Bill Gates. You can check out the full story on the internet. The short story is that his social business has been a great success, especially in overcoming the social problem in his country. One of the first projects is a Bank for the poor called the Grameen Bank. After that Bank project becoming successful, he started many other “Grameen” successful project, including a partnership with one of a well known company called Danone. The project then was called Grameen-Danone company. And it has made a success in solving mal nourish problem on millions kids in Bangladesh.
Anyway, I just want to tell you especially about how the Grameen Bank did it. And here are the few examples.

On Grameen Banks case: <opposite to conventional Banks> 4 Ways;
  • Conventional Bank VS Grameen Bank
  • Lend to the rich VS lend to the poor
  • Lend to the man (mostly) VS lend to the woman
  • Doing business in the city centre VS Doing business in the remote villages
  • People come to the Bank VS Bank come to the People
Grameen Bank's Facts:
  • Now they have more than 28000 staffs, 8 million borrowers.
  • Conventional Banks are usually own by the rich people, Grameen Bank own by poor women (borrowers/owners). Many of those women are poor and illiterate. When the Bank makes profit, it goes back to the borrowers as dividend.
  • 60 % of their deposit comes from the borrowers. Which mean no shortage of money or money supply is not a problem for them.
  • 100 % of ‘Grameen family’ (family whom their parents has a grameen account) kids are now in school. Which mean they will be able to read and write. They become better than their parents.
  • Now there are more than 40000 students in various types of majors. And now many of them are professional and ready to enter the field of work.
  • Grameen encourages them to be a job creator and not only a job seeker. Because is hard to find job in Bangladesh. Muhammad Yunus talks to them, and he gives example on how their mothers were able to create a job then, even though that they are illiterate and don’t have a business education. So, now the ‘Grameen family’ children that are literate and definitely has a higher education are suppose to be better in creating jobs. He said to them that they must be a job giver and not a job seeker.
  • For that job creator Yunus said that money won’t be a problem. Because Grameen Bank has a lot of money, but what kind of business that they will create is suppose to be their main concern. And also he said that the main issue is shifting the paradigm or mentality of a job seeker as the only way of success.
  • Another project of Grameen Bank is a “beggar’s loan project”. This simply is a loan for beggars so that they can be a seller and not just a beggar. Shortly, this project is another huge success and now they have 112.000 beggars participating in it. 60.000 beggars are stop begging completely. More than 8000 of them became a regular Grameen Bank’s borrowers.
  • From many examples of social business he created and his experiences from it, he concludes that poverty is not created by the poor people, but created by the system. Because the system sees that they can’t makes benefit or profit from the poor people. And in the contrary, so many evidence shows otherwise. Again and again when opportunity was given to the poor people, they can do something and made themselves better.
  • Yunus said: “All human being are packed with unlimited capacity, but being a poor means that unlimited potential is just wasted.”

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