My Nonprofit Reviews
Review for The BOMA Project, Manchester Center, VT, USA
The BOMA Project is doing amazing, vitally important work in Africa, empowering women not with mere words but with funds and training that enable impoverished women to become self-sufficient. I have some experience in Africa and I have seen the need; many of my friends in the non-profit world have lived and worked in Africa, struggling to help rural Africans rise out of dire poverty. The BOMA Project may be the most sensible and effective of these efforts. Where some micro-financing programs require that the micro-loans be paid back, with interest, the BOMA Project gives women an outright grant, then trains the women in basic business and finance and gives another grant to get the business off the ground. What's unique about the BOMA Project approach, in my experience, is that once trained and financed, the women form groups of three, each with equal say in how the funds are used, each with equal access to the common fund, and each with an equal share of the profits. This system also safeguards the women's funds from their family members; it's like having three persons holding keys to the safe deposit box and all three keys are required to open it. And unlike some NGOs I have known, the BOMA Project is not top-heavy with administrative superstructure; the funds raised are used well and wisely, in the field. I believe in their mission, and I believe they are carrying out their mission professionally and with great compassion.