As part of their Arrupe Fellowships, two IPED students spent the summer of 2002 overseas observing and evaluating various micro finance projects supported by the Trickle Up Program of New York. Ms. Michelle Born spent her summer in Central America visiting El Salvador and Guatemala, while Ms. Christina Kowal visited Mali and Burkina Faso in West Africa. Their field work assignments were funded by Fordham University, the Trickle Up Program, and Fordham’s Chapter of Phi Kappa Phi.
Ms. Michelle Born used a horse for transportation after visiting the Village of Talquesalar in El Salvador. The Trickle Up Program along with the Organizacion Empresarial Feminina (a community organization that supports rural women entrepreneurs) is considering the Village of Talquesalar as a potential program site. Michelle was part of the evaluation team.
Michelle also visited Guatemala where she met various villagers in Nebaj involved in small business entreprises.
Many individuals from Nebaj are recipients of Trickle Up Program grants for a range of development projects from poultry production to carpentry.
Ms. Christina Kowal visited a number of grass-roots organizations that support small entrepreneurs in Mali and Burkina Faso. Above Christina is visiting a woman in the province of Timbuktu in Mali who developed a small business baking and selling fried dough as a result of a grant from the Trickle Up Program.
Christina also traveled to the City of Po in Burkina Faso where she worked with the Association Ga Mo Wigna, a community association that sponsors environmentally sound projects in agriculture and small business.
Each year the IPED Program uses Arrupe Fellowships to attract highly qualified individuals who have a strong interest in pursuing careers with private voluntary international relief and development organizations. As part of their fellowships they are expected to complete an overseas summer field assignment between their first and second years of studies.