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Refuge to Return: Operational Lessons for Serving Mobile Populations in Conflict-Affected Environments (microNOTE)

Chemonics International
Timothy Nourse
Institutional Sponsor: 
United States Agency for International Development
Publication date: 
Monday, August 9, 2004
For microfinance programs to become part of the permanent institutional fabric of an emerging post-conflict economy, loan recovery must be a key goal from the outset. This is hard to do with mobile populations, who may at any time literally walk away from their loans. Thus, many practitioners have concluded that it's usually best to work with relatively stable populations. Dave Larson (MBP Microfinance Following Conflict, Brief No. 4, 2002). This note provides a summary of American Refugee Committee's operational lessons with microfinance programs for refugees of Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea. The note identifies challenges and opportunities faced in implementing microfinance programs for mobile populations affected by conflicts.