Kiva conducts regular, ongoing monitoring of all Field Partners, but only posts status updates here in response to relevant, major changes at the partner.Status Update - April 30, 2015
Kiva has moved this Field Partner to inactive status. This means Working Solutions is no longer fundraising loans on Kiva, though Kiva fully expects the partner to continue to send repayments owed to Kiva lenders for as long as the partner has an outstanding balance. Working Solutions has not had the need to post loans on Kiva as it has access to other funding sources. If and when this partner requests to fundraise loans on Kiva again, we will first conduct any additional monitoring and due diligence tasks we believe necessary.Partner Description:
Working Solutions is a nonprofit organization committed to supporting new and existing businesses in the San Francisco Bay Area by providing microloans, technical assistance, referrals for local resources and educational workshops on access to capital.
Since its inception, the organization’s microloan program has provided $2.6 million in funding to small businesses, focusing on low-income clients living in nine Bay Area counties: Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Solano and Sonoma.
By combining its microloan program with an intensive education and advising program, Working Solutions supports microenterprise development with the aim of strengthening the local economy, creating jobs and building stable communities.
In addition, the organization has established the Working Solutions Borrower Network to help connect business owners to one another. The network provides access to industry resources, expert advice and referrals to other organizations and government agencies.
Working Solutions’ impact:
Over the last 13 years, Working Solutions has been actively lending and providing education to borrowers throughout the Bay Area, including many who have little or no access to financing. As a result, over 300 jobs have been created, more than 7,000 entrepreneurs have been trained through the organization’s educational presentations and more than 1,000 entrepreneurs have received referrals to local business resources.
Currently, 65% of Working Solutions’ borrowers come from low-income backgrounds and 40% represent minorities; 65% of the businesses funded are owned by women.
Working with CAMEO:
Working Solutions has partnered with Kiva and CAMEO (California Association for Microenterprise Opportunity) to promote microlending in California. In this partnership, CAMEO serves to support California microlenders, such as Working Solutions, throughout its partnership with Kiva.
CAMEO’s mission is to grow a healthy, vibrant, thriving environment for all entrepreneurs and start-up businesses by advancing the work of its statewide member network. CAMEO believes a strong local entrepreneurial climate builds wealth and develops strong California communities.
CAMEO’s member organizations, a network of 55 training and 35 lending institutions, provide entrepreneurs with small and micro-business financing, asset-building programs, business technical assistance and business management training. In 2011, CAMEO members served 21,000 very small businesses with training, business and credit assistance and loans. These firms -- largely start-ups with less than five employees -- supported or created 37,000 new jobs in California.
CAMEO considers itself the voice of micro-business in California and nationally to promote the economic impacts of micro-business and self-employment. CAMEO serves to expand resources and build the capacity of its member organizations to increase business assistance and lending to underserved communities.
The CAMEO-Kiva collaboration brings new resources, investors and loan capital into the California micro sector and promotes best practices among microlenders by demanding high standards along with training. The Kiva brand will bring more attention to the economic impact of micro-business. As the largest network of microlenders in California, CAMEO is pleased to partner with Kiva to expand microlending in California.
Image courtesy of Working Solutions.