0100_DetailsThe International Folk Art Alliance (IFAA) is excited to partner with the Alliance for Artisan Enterprise (AAE) on a new Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) Commitment to Action. In collaboration with the Aspen Institute, United States Department of State, Kiva, and artist businesses in over 20 countries, this CGI Commitment to Action will fund much-needed micro-loans for folk artists and artist cooperatives to grow their businesses. The financing will be distributed through loans from Kiva.

The loans offered will target artists in the developing world who do not have access to adequate financing. Loans can be used for several purposes: to support the purchase of supplies and materials, as well as the building of infrastructure; to develop new products; or to cover the costs associated with getting to markets, allowing artists to share their traditions with the world.

The International Folk Art Alliance is an active member of AAE and we are looking forward to participating in the AAE-Kiva loan initiative to offer new financing options for folk artists who have participated in IFAA programs. We have always been committed to creating more opportunities for folk artists around the world and now, through this program, new possibilities await. This is an exciting next step to investing in folk artists and helping them have access to needed capital to expand their creative enterprises

With these loans, folk artists will be able to overcome financial obstacles and continue on a path of accomplishment. When folk artists are successful, schools are built, wells are dug, and timeless traditions are celebrated and preserved.

The Alliance for Artisan Enterprise was launched by Hillary Clinton in 2012 and is hosted by the Aspen Institute. It is a collaborative effort of over 45 organizations, corporations, and individuals working together to promote the full potential of the artisan sector to spur economic development. As a Kiva field partner, AAE aims to help bridge the financing gap for artists in more than 110 developing countries around the world.

Kiva is a non-profit organization that allows individuals to lend money via the Internet to low-income and underserved entrepreneurs around the world. Kiva’s mission is “to connect people through lending to alleviate poverty.” Since 2005, Kiva has crowd-funded more than 1 million loans, totaling more than a half a billion dollars, at a repayment rate of 99 percent. As of November 2013, Kiva was raising about $1 million every three days. The Kiva platform has attracted a community of more than 1 million lenders from around the world.

The Kiva model relies on a network of field partners, like AAE, to administer the loans on the ground. Kiva includes personal stories of each person who needs a loan, helping to connect lenders with the individuals they’re supporting.

To learn more about this new initiative and to apply for a loan through Kiva, please visit their website.

Partners of the Alliance for Artisan Enterprise Innovative Financing Project