Positive Muslim News

News about good things Muslims are doing in North America and around the world.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Muslim man wins Nobel Peace Prize

Salam/Peace:

OSLO, Norway - Bangladeshi economist Muhammad Yunus and the Grameen Bank he founded won the Nobel Peace Prize on Friday for their pioneering use of tiny, seemingly insignificant loans — microcredit — to lift millions out of poverty.

Through Yunus's efforts and those of the bank he founded, poor people around the world, especially women, have been able to buy cows, a few chickens or the cell phone they desperately needed to get ahead.

The 65-year-old economist said he would use part of his share of the $1.4 million award money to create a company to make low-cost, high-nutrition food for the poor. The rest would go toward setting up an eye hospital for the poor in Bangladesh, he said.

[...]


Yunus told The Associated Press in a 2004 interview that his "eureka moment" came while chatting to a shy woman weaving bamboo stools with calloused fingers.

Sufia Begum was a 21-year-old villager and a mother of three when the economics professor met her in 1974 and asked her how much she earned. She replied that she borrowed about five taka (nine cents) from a middleman for the bamboo for each stool.

All but two cents of that went back to the lender.

"I thought to myself, my God, for five takas she has become a slave," Yunus said in the interview.

"I couldn't understand how she could be so poor when she was making such beautiful things," he said.

The following day, he and his students did a survey in the woman's village, Jobra, and discovered that 43 of the villagers owed a total of 856 taka (about $27).

"I couldn't take it anymore. I put the $27 out there and told them they could liberate themselves," he said, and pay him back whenever they could. The idea was to buy their own materials and cut out the middleman.

They all paid him back, day by day, over a year, and his spur-of-the-moment generosity grew into a full-fledged business concept that came to fruition with the founding of Grameen Bank in 1983.

Read the whole article at:
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20061013/ap_on_re_eu/nobel_peace

2 Comments:

  • At 5:52 PM, Anonymous muslim said…

    this is what the Quran ask the Muslims to be. Be fruitful to the community. not somebody who issue narrow minded fatwa that make everybody suffers.

     
  • At 7:57 AM, Anonymous Muslim Too said…

    Congratulations to Muhammed Yunus.
    I have heard a considerable amount about microcredit in the last year, strangely enough Muhammed Yunus was not mentioned. Is this yet another attempt by the middlemen to cut out the Muslim?
    Thankfully the prize proves that they did not succeed.

     

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