Walking on a tightrope: Balancing MF financial sustainability and poverty orientation in Mali
This paper reflects on experience of two MFIs in Mali, both of which have witnessed a donor withdrawal in recent years. The objective is to trace the consequence of the observed
reduction in external funds in terms of changes in both breadth and depth of poverty outreach during the period 1999-2004. The two MFIs reacted differently to donor withdrawal. While Nyèsigiso has continued to assure sound financial profile as well as a growth in its clientele, by sacrificing in terms of poverty orientation, the Caisses Villageoises d’Epargne et de Crédit Autogérées des Pays Dogon have kept their focus on very poor and vulnerable clients, but suffered in terms of financial sustainability.