As another month begins, we would like to take a moment to once again recognize another one of our wonderful donors, LeeAnn Glover.
A local Madisonian, Glover has the area firmly imprinted in her life. She grew up in Madison, then went on to attend the University of Wisconsin Madison and later received a master’s in sustainability leadership from Edgewood College. She states that the more she learned about sustainability, the more her views on work and her place in the world changed as well. Given that microfinance is a sustainable version of aid and financial growth, the concept fit with her views on sustainability.
Glover came to know Wisconsin Microfinance around three years ago after hearing about the organization through her work at American Family Insurance. Although she has no direct experience with microfinance, Glover appreciates the success rate behind the loans and the breadth of people that can be positively affected by Wisconsin Microfinance. In fact, Wisconsin Microfinance carries a 96% repayment rate on the over 1000 loans that have been given out.
For Glover, Wisconsin Microfinance sets itself apart through its focus on helping female business owners. Over 80% of Wisconsin Microfinance’s loans are given to women, a defining characteristic of microfinance institutions everywhere. By providing access to capital, something which a third of all women do not have, we provide female business owners with financial empowerment and autonomy.
In addition, she states that Wisconsin Microfinance’s organizational structure helped to differentiate it as well. Staffed completely by volunteers and students from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Wisconsin Microfinance is able to keep administrative costs to a bare minimum, maximizing the impact every donation has. In her own words,
“I especially like that it is student-run and that young people are getting the experience in making a lasting positive change in the world.”
Few organizations really allow young people to get such a rich experience and the ability to make a serious impact. For Glover, she believes strongly in the next generation’s ability to “make the world a better place, challenge the status quo and innovate for a brighter future.” However, the tides of change are not directed exclusively by young people. In fact, Glover herself went back to school in her fifties to learn more about sustainability, and most importantly, how to take action. Every day brings a new dawn and a new opportunity to change the world for the better. So, seize each day and each opportunity to improve the world, no matter the scale. After all, there’s no time like the present.