One last thing…

Microcredit could help young people in the West.

Marco Visscher | March 2007 issue
You mean it could help poor youth in Africa or India to take out a loan – very noble.
Edgar Neo: “No, I actually mean young people in the West.”
But aren’t they wealthier than ever?
“Just ask the tens of thousands of young immigrants in major Dutch cities who can’t find work or an internship and continually fall through the cracks. The Dutch complain when these immigrant kids hang out on the street, but employers don’t want to hire someone who looks exotic or has a foreign name; they’d rather have a native Dutch person. And if those young people want to set up a business, they can’t get a bank loan because they didn’t make their scooter payments on time.”
Well, they should have made the payments.
“Fair enough, but should it haunt them five years after the fact? The question is, how can we help people who are constantly being rejected? That question has been asked in poor countries and has long been answered: by providing them with access to microfinancing. The youth in Dutch cities really don’t need a lot of money. They’re smart, handy, creative; they network, exchange services with friends. The whole system of extending small loans used in the villages of Bangladesh and the slums of Nairobi can be easily replicated in Amsterdam. And the effects of microcredit are clear: Its recipients recover their self-respect, gain standing in the community and take more responsibility.”
What happens if you don’t give young people that option?
“You get what happened with the riots in the Parisian suburbs. Societal unrest is fed by the sense of hopelessness experienced by many young people – which is why we need to stimulate their entrepreneurial spirit. It gives them control over their lives, which is the best guarantee of a better future.”
Social entrepreneur Edgar Neo is the founder of Lotsov, a Dutch citizens group that inspires youth to “get the best out of themselves in order to build independent lives.”
 

Solution News Source

One last thing…

Microcredit could help young people in the West.

Marco Visscher | March 2007 issue
You mean it could help poor youth in Africa or India to take out a loan – very noble.
Edgar Neo: “No, I actually mean young people in the West.”
But aren’t they wealthier than ever?
“Just ask the tens of thousands of young immigrants in major Dutch cities who can’t find work or an internship and continually fall through the cracks. The Dutch complain when these immigrant kids hang out on the street, but employers don’t want to hire someone who looks exotic or has a foreign name; they’d rather have a native Dutch person. And if those young people want to set up a business, they can’t get a bank loan because they didn’t make their scooter payments on time.”
Well, they should have made the payments.
“Fair enough, but should it haunt them five years after the fact? The question is, how can we help people who are constantly being rejected? That question has been asked in poor countries and has long been answered: by providing them with access to microfinancing. The youth in Dutch cities really don’t need a lot of money. They’re smart, handy, creative; they network, exchange services with friends. The whole system of extending small loans used in the villages of Bangladesh and the slums of Nairobi can be easily replicated in Amsterdam. And the effects of microcredit are clear: Its recipients recover their self-respect, gain standing in the community and take more responsibility.”
What happens if you don’t give young people that option?
“You get what happened with the riots in the Parisian suburbs. Societal unrest is fed by the sense of hopelessness experienced by many young people – which is why we need to stimulate their entrepreneurial spirit. It gives them control over their lives, which is the best guarantee of a better future.”
Social entrepreneur Edgar Neo is the founder of Lotsov, a Dutch citizens group that inspires youth to “get the best out of themselves in order to build independent lives.”
 

Solution News Source

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