Kiva conducts regular, ongoing monitoring of all Lending Partners, but only posts status updates here in response to relevant, major changes at the partner.

March 20, 2023

The ongoing political and economic crisis in Lebanon continues to impact the country greatly. The unprecedented situation, which the World Bank has called one of the most severe economic and financial crises the world has seen since 1850, has led to significant challenges in Vitas’ ability to operate. With around 80% of the population now living below the poverty line according to the UN, Kiva no longer expects all of Vitas’ borrowers to be able to repay what they owe to Kiva lenders. When Vitas is able to collect from their borrowers, capital controls remain in place preventing US dollars from being sent out of the country, limiting Vitas’ ability to send repayments to Kiva lenders.

Kiva remains in close contact with the organization and we are working together to determine how to receive funds owed to Kiva lenders that Vitas has been able to collect from their borrowers. We are hopeful that we will begin receiving some repayments soon and will post more information when it becomes available. We thank lenders for their understanding during these difficult times in Lebanon.

January 2021 Update:

To reflect the current crisis in Lebanon, Kiva has re-assessed the level of risk associated with loans from each of our Lending Partners in the country. Unfortunately, the political and economic situation in Lebanon has not improved, and Covid-19 and the aftermath of the Beirut explosion in August continue to impact an already difficult situation. We remain in close contact with Vitas and while we are confident they are managing the situation as best they can, there are numerous factors outside of their control. A key part of our risk rating is based on macro-level risks of a country, and to reflect the current situation in Lebanon and the inability to transfer US dollars out of the country, our new assessment has resulted in a risk rating of 2.0 stars for Vitas.

August 2020 Update:

Kiva continues to be saddened by the August explosion in Beirut. For an update on how we, and our partners, are responding, please see our blog post here.

July 2020 - COVID-19 Update:

This message is a follow-up from our February 14 status update below. Prior to the on-going COVID-19 pandemic, Lebanon was already facing a political and economic crisis, which began last year. Both of these events have contributed to the challenging situation in Lebanon currently. Like many other countries, Lebanon imposed a nation-wide shutdown, as well as a temporary moratorium on loan payments which not only affects microfinance, but the economy as a whole. As a result, Vitas has experienced difficulty collecting loan repayments due to the aforementioned restrictions or fallout effects of the virus.

Beyond COVID-19, capital controls (put in place by banks at the start of the economic crisis in November) continue, preventing all outgoing transfers of US dollars. This means that our partners remain unable to remit repayments owed to Kiva lenders. Kiva continues to be in close contact with Vitas and we are confident they are managing the challenging situation as best they can. We thank lenders for their understanding of the current state of Lebanon during this time. We will post additional updates as we have them.

Status update — February 14, 2020

The recent unrest in Lebanon, beginning with protests and leading to the fall of the government, has greatly impacted the operations of our partners in the country. The economic implications have been significant, including capital controls put in place by banks which prevent all outgoing transfers of US dollars. As a result, our partners are currently unable to remit repayments owed to Kiva lenders. Kiva is in close contact with Vitas and we are confident they are managing the situation as best they can, but until the situation improves Vitas will not be posting loans to Kiva. We thank lenders for their patience during these challenging times in Lebanon.

Partner Description:

Vitas s.a.l. has been a major player in the Lebanese Microfinance sector since 1999. Originally a micro-credit program created by CHF International called Ameen, it evolved to become Ameen s.a.l. in 2003, a Lebanese services company. In 2007, Ameen s.a.l. registered with the Central Bank of Lebanon to become the first Lebanese financial institution specialized in microfinance. Most recently, Ameen entered the Vitas Group to expand its direct lending capacity and is now known as Vitas s.a.l.


Vitas s.a.l. is the first registered Lebanese microfinance institution that provides responsible financial services to microentrepreneurs, small and medium enterprises (SME), and salaried employees. The organization serves its clients across Lebanon both directly as well as in partnership with banks. Its objective is to help its clients start and develop their businesses and improve their quality of life.


Vitas’s dedicated and professional staff operates in partnership with its bank partners to serve clients in 73 branch locations throughout Lebanon. It is also engaged in direct lending. Since its inception, it has provided high-quality financial services to over 46,000 borrowers and disbursed over 90,000 loans totaling more than US$130 million.


Business Loans: Designed for micro-entrepreneurs and small and medium enterprises (SMEs), the business loan helps to support and advance clients’ business activities. Clients with both informal and formal sector businesses make use of this loan. The Vitas Micro Entrepreneur Loan ranges from US$300-$5,000 and the Vitas SME Loan ranges from US$5,100-$15,000.

Consumer Loans: The Vitas Personal Loan is intended for a wide range of personal consumption purposes including weddings, automobile purchases, travel, education and healthcare. Loan amounts range from US$300-$5,000.

Housing Loans: Housing Loans for the home improvement of an applicant’s residence are intended for the renovation, rebuilding, repairing or expanding for the resident's premises. Vitas offers two types of housing loans — one for small improvements that ranges from US$300-$5,000 and one for larger renovation and construction projects that ranges from US$5,100-$15,000.

ICT Loans: The Vitas Information and Communication Technology (ICT) loan targets ICT driven businesses and start ups in rural and peri-urban areas in Lebanon. Vitas delivers these loans in partnership with Cisco systems. The loan amount ranges from US$300-$10,000. Vitas has invested in a specialized unit to focus on micro credit for rural ICT entrepreneurs to support this innovative loan product.

Kiva Loans: Vitas offers Kiva loans as a separate product to support micro enterprises. The loan amount ranges from US$300-$1,200. Vitas has formally integrated Kiva into its organizational process, including hiring a coordinator specifically to manage Kiva loans. With Kiva’s 0% interest capital, Vitas has been able to offer lower interest rates on Kiva loans and is able to disburse Kiva loans faster than any of its other micro loan products.


Vitas's objective to enhance the institutional capacity of private commercial banks to deliver microfinance products was accomplished by partnering with institutions that have a reputation for quality, outreach and interest in the microfinance sector. Currently -- in addition to Kiva -- the organization partners with:

USAID: U.S. Agency for International Development

Mix Market: A global information platform on microfinance

Sanabel: Microfinance network of Arab countries

OPIC: Overseas Private Investment Corporation

CISCO/Partnership for Lebanon: To provide needed resources to assist the reconstruction effort in Lebanon by supporting technology infrastructure projects.

Relief International: A humanitarian non-profit agency that provides emergency relief and assistance to vulnerable communities worldwide.

IESC/VEGA: A non-profit organization using private sector volunteers to assist economic growth around the world.

Awards and Honors

- Certificate of Transparency, Mix Market (2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2008, 2009)

- MIX Global 100 Composite Ranking (2008 and 2009): A ranking of the top 100 microfinance organizations that achieve the best outreach, efficiency and transparency.

- Best Micro-Entrepreneur of the Year, Sanabel Microfinance Network (2008)

- YMCA-Citigroup Micro-Entrepreneurship Awards (2007 to 2010)

Get involved with Vitas as a member of the Ameen Lebanon Kiva lending team. Or lend to a Vitas micro-entrepreneur today!

Repayment Performance on Kiva

    This Lending Partner All Kiva Partners
  Start Date On Kiva Sep 16, 2008 Oct 12, 2005
Total Loans $7,923,875 $1,962,636,330
Amount of raised Inactive loans $0 $715,425
Number of raised Inactive loans 0 485
Amount of Paying Back Loans $1,126,525 $155,418,235
Number of Paying Back Loans 1,029 181,139
Amount of Ended Loans $6,797,350 $1,775,906,450
Number of Ended Loans 6,089 2,383,039
Delinquency Rate 100.00% 11.39%
Amount in Arrears $625,504 $10,640,926
Outstanding Portfolio $585,645 $93,458,977
Number of Loans Delinquent 1,029 44,447
Default Rate 0.07% 1.82%
Amount of Ended Loans Defaulted $4,456 $32,352,443
Number of Ended Loans Defaulted 17 84,926
Currency Exchange Loss Rate 0.00% 0.49%
Amount of Currency Exchange Loss $0 $12,028,211
Refund Rate 0.93% 0.54%
Amount of Refunded Loans $74,075 $10,528,825
Number of Refunded Loans 51 9,602

Loan Characteristics On Kiva

    This Lending Partner All Kiva Partners
  Loans to Women Borrowers 57.92% 78.24%
Average Loan Size $1,116 $392
Average Individual Loan Size $1,116 $589
Average Group Loan Size $0 $1,893
Average number of borrowers per group 0 8.3
Average GDP per capita (PPP) in local country $15,800 $5,599
Average Loan Size / GDP per capita (PPP) 7.06% 7.00%
Average Time to Fund a Loan 10.84 days 8.94 days
Average Dollars Raised Per Day Per Loan $102.94 $43.85
  Average Loan Term 11.76 months 11.47 months

Journaling Performance on Kiva

    This Lending Partner All Kiva Partners
  Total Journals 4,219 1,181,853
  Journaling Rate 58.96% 42.25%
  Average Number of Comments Per Journal 0.01 0.02
  Average Number of Recommendations Per Journal 0.15 0.57

Borrowing Cost Comparison (based on 2016 data)

    This Lending Partner Median for MFI's in Country All Kiva Partners
  Average Cost to Borrower 32% PY 32.00% PY 27.02% PY
  Profitability (return on assets) 0.12% -13.5% -3.03%
  Average Loan Size (% of per capita income) N/A 11.00% 0.00%

Country Fast Facts

Lending Partner Staff

Jihane Hanna
Nemr Kanafani
MIS Team