The discussion about the role of women working in the technology sector – with a specific emphasis on what’s happening in Silicon Valley – has been in the spotlight for some months now. But only a couple of weeks ago the conversation spiralled out of control when a memo about this topic, written by an employee at Google, was given international coverage by the media. The company fired the author of the memo, who subsequently took to the microphone in various interviews to give his side of the story, threats of legal action followed, and what is left now is the cacophony of millions of views mostly expressed in 140 characters or less.
A few days before my trip, I shot a video of my commute in London as a way of practicing with the camera. I remember that day thinking it would be fun to record another video when I was in Uganda, showing my routine of going from home to work.
Fast-forward three weeks, and here you have me in this new video, riding on the back of a Bajaj Boxer 150cc, zig-zagging the streets of Kampala, full of cars, people and motorbikes!
Boda-bodas, as these bikes are known, are omnipresent in the Ugandan landscape, and they are the standard mean of transport for almost everybody. Tugende, the microfinance company that I am helping, provides financing to the boda-boda drives (I’ll get to the details of that in my next post).
Perhaps you have seen those documentaries of people trying to live according to a certain rule for some prolongued time: eating only burgers or following a strict vegan diet or following exactly the teachings of the Bible.
In my last video I proposed a reality show following one or two people with the premise they can’t use any financial services other than cash. I think it would be quite dramatic!
In a recent video I presented the definition of microfinance given by professor Tony Sheldon at Yale University and which I really like:
Microfinance is financial services for the poor.
Period. That’s it. Succinct and to the point, it doesn’t fall into the trap of ambiguities nor offuscate with arbitrary complexities something that can be (and should be) as straightforward as this. Continue reading “One Definition and Ten Questions (video)”
Today was my first day working at Tugende, the microfinance company where I’m working this month, and I couldn’t be happier of finally started my assignment here. The people are fantastic and the place is beautiful! I shot a short video of my first impressions and you probably can tell how excited I am for this opportunity (ok, perhaps you can’t tell because I’m not good good at this thing of smiling to the camera, but you get my point).
In my next posts I’ll go into the mission of Tugende, the sort of work that I’ll do here, and the main reason for this trip: seeing how microfinance work in the real world.
(written on July 17th 2017)
The door-to-door trip from London to Kampala took 18 hours. Not bad at all. A similar journey between London and Bogota used to take 24 hours, before Avianca introduced the direct flight, and I don’t used to feel very tired after those. However, for some reason (age?), when I got finally to my accommodation here in Kampala I was knackered.
In this video you can see the decline in my strength and spirit over the course of that day.