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Published by: apusayeed on Jul 06, 2009
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Inception of Grameen Bank:
The word “Grameen” came from the word “gram” which means village in English. In 1976, theGrameen Bank project was born in the village of Jobra; transformed into a formal bank in the year 1983.This bank works exclusively for women. Borrowers of Grameen Bank who are mostly women,own 94% of this bank and the rest 6% is owned by the government.
In 1979, the bank has expanded to Tangail and that is where we went to experience the bank an d the way of life of their members. In 1976 when Professor Muhammad Yunus and hiscolleagues started giving out tiny loans under a system, which later become known as theGrameen Bank, they never imagined that some day they would be reaching hundreds of thousands, let alone three million, borrowers. But the capabilities and commitment of their staff and borrowers gave them the courage to expand boldly.In the late 1980s, they started to think of ways in which they could build on the network thattheir borrowers represented, in order to accelerate their progress towards a poverty-freeworld and also improve Bangladesh's overall economic performance. So, in the beginning,they got involved in leasing unutilized and underutilized fishing ponds and irrigation pumpssuch as deep tube wells. At about the same time, they also became involved in providingtraining and other support to people from other third world countries that wanted to adapt theGrameen methodology.After some initial successes in the fisheries and irrigation projects, they became interested inexpanding their work by getting involved in other business in various new sectors. By thistime, carrying out all these initiatives under Grameen Bank became unwieldy, and from 1989they began to establish new organizations.As they moved forward, they gained confidence and became more and more bold in our non- banking activities. Independently from Grameen Bank, they became involved in venturecapital, the textile industry, an Internet service provider and much more. Each new initiativewas incorporated in an extending organization or spun off into a new one. This became whatthey call the Grameen Family of Organizations.
Objectives of Grameen Bank 
The basic purpose of Grameen Bank is that the bank goes to the poor, since it’s difficultfor the poor people to come to the bank.
Extend banking facilities to poor men and women;
Eliminate the exploitation of the poor by money lenders;
Create opportunities for self-employment for the vast multitude of unemployed people in rural Bangladesh;
Bring the disadvantaged, mostly the women from the poorest households, within thefold of an organizational format which they can understand and manage bythemselves; and1
Reverse the age-old vicious circle of "low income, low saving & low investment",into virtuous circle of "low income, injection of credit, investment, more income,more savings, more investment, more income".
The Sixteen Decision:
The four principles of Grameen bank – Discipline, Unity, Courage and Hard work – we shallfollow and advance in all walks of our lives.
We shall bring prosperity to our families.
We shall not live in dilapidated house. We shall repair our houses and work towards constructing new houses as soon as possible.
We shall grow vegetables all the year round. We shall eat plenty of them and sellthe surplus.
During the plantation seasons, we shall plant as many seedlings as possible.
We shall plan to keep our families small. We shall minimize our expenditures. Weshall look after our health.
We shall educate our children and ensure that they can earn to pay for their education.
We shall always keep our children and the environment clean.
We shall build and use pit latrines.
We shall boil water before drinking or use alum to purify it.
We shall not take any dowry at our son’s weddings: neither shall we give anydowry in our daughter weddings. We shall keep the center free from the curse of dowry. We shall not practice child marriage.
We shall not inflict any injustice on anyone; neither shall we allow anyone to doso.
For higher income we shall collectively undertake bigger investments.
We shall always be ready to help each other. If anyone is in difficulty, we shall allhelp.
If we come to know of any breach of discipline in any center, we shall go thereand help restore discipline.
We shall take part in all social activities collectively.
Grameen Bank in 2006:
Today Grameen Bank is reaching 5.7 million poor borrowers, 96% of whom are women. The bank is owned by the poor borrowers. Grameen Bank has 1736 branches working in 90 percent of the villages in Bangladesh. The staff is nearly 17000. The total amount of fundsdisbursed is US$ 5.25 billion. Out of this, US$ 4.83 billion has been repaid. Current amount2
of outstanding loans stands at US$ 425 million. From January to December, 2005 GrameenBank disbursed US$ 612 million.Projected disbursement for 2006 is US$ 821 million; among this monthly disbursement of US$ 68.40 million. End of the year outstanding loan is projected to be at US$ 600 million.The loan recovery rate is 99.01%.
The Nobel Peace Prize:
The Norwegian Nobel Committee has decided to award the Nobel Peace Prize for 2006,divided into two equal parts, to Muhammad Yunus and Grameen Bank for their efforts tocreate economic and social development from below. Lasting peace cannot be achievedunless large population groups find ways in which to break out of poverty. Micro-credit isone such means. Muhammad Yunus has shown himself to be a leader who has managed totranslate visions into practical action for the benefit of millions of people, not only inBangladesh, but also in many other countries. Loans to poor people without any financialsecurity had appeared to be an impossible idea. From modest beginnings three decades ago,Yunus has, first and foremost through Grameen Bank, developed micro-credit into an ever more important instrument in the struggle against poverty. Grameen Bank has been a sourceof ideas and models for the many institutions in the field of micro-credit that have sprung uparound the world.Micro-credit has proved to be an important liberating force in societies where women in particular have to struggle against repressive social and economic conditions. Economicgrowth and political democracy cannot achieve their full potential unless the female half of humanity participates on an equal footing with the male. Yunus's long-term vision is toeliminate poverty in the world. That vision cannot be realized by means of micro-creditalone. But Muhammad Yunus and Grameen Bank have shown that, in the continuing effortsto achieve it, micro-credit must play a major part. 
What separates Grameen Bank from Conventional Banks?
Grameen micro credit promote credit as a human right
Its mission is to help poor families in rural Bangladesh to help themselves bytargeting the traditional the anchor of the family who are the women.
It relies on trust rather than legally enforceable contracts or collateral.
It is provided for creating self-employment for income generation and housingfor the poor rather than for consumption.
It rejected conventional banking ideology by affirming that poor people arecredit worthy individuals, a belief that other banks have generally refused to believe.3

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