How One Volunteer Helped Tell the Stories of Poor Women in the Middle East

SarahAs she began updating her will, Sarah Benn was faced with an important question: Where did she want her assets to go?

“There are so many good causes and organizations out there, and I wasn’t sure where to start,” she said. “Then I remembered reading Dr. Muhammad Yunus’ book. I was so impressed by his work and so convinced of its effectiveness in reaching so many of the poorest. I knew I wanted to support an organization that shared his vision. After some research, I decided that working with Grameen Foundation would give me the best return on my charitable donation.”

After visiting Grameen Foundation’s website to explore giving options, Sarah learned about Bankers without Borders®, the foundation’s program for skilled volunteers. Sarah wasn’t sure if her skills would be useful, but quickly found a project that caught her eye: Grameen-Jameel Microfinance Limited needed someone to create a new website that would demonstrate its work and attract more public support in the Middle East and North Africa region. Having a strong background in website development, Sarah decided to apply. 

Grameen-Jameel was established in 2003 by Grameen Foundation and Abdul Latif Jameel Community Initiatives and was incorporated in 2007. Headquartered in Dubai, it provides financial and technical assistance to microfinance institutions in the Middle East, North Africa and Turkey. Over the past decade, it has helped more than 20 microfinance institutions serve more than 2 million clients.

Sarah had volunteered with other organizations before: first in Kenya assessing the programs of an American NGO, and later in Haiti working to give physical therapy to post-quake victims who needed additional care to become independent. Both, however, were short-term projects.  As a Bankers without Borders volunteer, she was able to work through the entire web design process, from consultation to completion. 

“My volunteer experience with Bankers without Borders has been incredibly rewarding.”

“Working with Grameen-Jameel allowed me to make a more lasting contribution to the organization and to its work,” said Sarah. “My volunteer experience with Bankers without Borders has been incredibly rewarding. Not only could I work with the Grameen-Jameel staff, but also, and more importantly, I could learn about the clients they serve and convey their stories. They are the stars of the show.”

What’s your passion? Visit Bankers without Borders today to learn how you can help poor women and men reach their true potential.