Friendship Bridge

Rating: 4.5 stars   2 reviews

Issues: International, Economic Development, Microfinance

Location: 405 Urban St Ste 140 Lakewood CO 80228 USA

Mission: Friendship Bridge provides microcredit and education to Guatemalan women so that they can create their own solutions to poverty for themselves, their families and their communities.
Target demographics: Rural, impoverished women in Guatemala
Direct beneficiaries per year: For the past decade, Friendship Bridge has consistently provided microcredit and education to thousands of women in Guatemala each year. In 2010, Friendship Bridge empowered more than 13,000 women.
Geographic areas served: 10 departments throughout Guatemala
Programs: Microcredit Plus -- microcredit combined with non-formal participatory education on relevant topics such as business, health and self-esteem.
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Community Reviews

Rating: 5 stars  

I have been a supporter of Friendship Bridge for several years, and recently joined a board committee. This summer, my daughter was a volunteer intern with FB in Guatemala. I know the director fairly well, starting before she joined the organization. Karen is a business powerhouse and is doing great things for the organization. She is also very visible and well connected in the community. Previously she had a very high powered job in the equipment leasing division of Key Bank.

I am a finance person, and have looked at the organization's 2012 Form 990. The net cash flow is positive and the balance sheet looks fairly strong with over $1 million of cash reserves. I have visited women that they serve in Guatemala, who had used loan proceeds to start small businesses and were very appreciative.

I am very involved in the non-profit world and am completely impressed by this organization.

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Did the organization use your time wisely?

Quite well

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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 4 stars  

13 people found this review helpful

It is an absolute truth that when you educate girls and women and provide them with the opportunity to better themselves through business, they will lift their family, even their entire village, out of poverty. Friendship Bridge follows through on their promise to educate and empower women in rural areas of Guatemala through microcredit. Their success rate shows in the smiling faces of the women who have taken advantage of the microfinance opportunities offered by Friendship Bridge. This organization follows through by offering textile shows in the States, and educational opportunities in the villages of Guatemala. Women who use the resources provided by Friendship Bridge are seeing their children attending school and even achieving goals such as graduation from high school and college. These families are learning the tools to lift themselves from poverty, a skill that can be passed on to generation after generation. My experience as a donor to Friendship Bridge has been wonderful. They are responsive to the requests of donors, and I find that the operational expenses are well within the acceptable range. I know my money is going to directly benefit a woman in Guatemala who will use it to the betterment of her family and her village. If I had any criticism, it would be that I would like to see Friendship Bridge expand beyond the borders of Guatemala - but I understand that it is most beneficial to focus on one area than to spread beyond their means and become less effective.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

seeing the results of the work the women have Guatemala have accomplished through their microloans.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

expand beyond the current borders of Guatemala into other impoverished nations, offering their successful education and microcredit programs to more women and families.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every six months

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?


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