Pro-Poor MF Quiz

If you manage an MFI that is focused on serving people living in poverty, or if you are curious about what it takes to effectively reach out to and serve them, see how you do on the following quiz.  When you click on each possible answer, you will see an explanation as to why an MFI’s efforts might be considered insufficient for truly reaching the poor or why those efforts represent best practices in the industry.

The quiz is designed to give you an idea of the type of principles, practices and indicators that should be evaluated when an MFI is seeking to improve its impact on the poor. Should you wish to conduct a full evaluation of your MFI’s pro-poor efforts, consider joining the Truelift community to get started!

Scenario: You are a staff member at a microfinance institution (MFI) headquartered in Guatemala City. Amelia is a single mom with three children living in a poor, rural area of Guatemala served by one of the branches of your MFI. She walks into the branch office and says she needs a small loan very quickly because part of her workshop burned down. She won’t be able to repay her first installment for at least six months because she will need time to create and sell a new inventory of wedding dresses.


0 – 5 Points: If your organization works in a poor region, or if people affected by poverty are your customer, or if you got into business to help vulnerable people, then you need to become more familiar with the principles, practices and indicators that should be integrated into your operations. A good first step would be a Truelift Assessment, which starts with a statement of commitment and then joining Truelift’s “Community of Practice” to learn how you may improve your pro-poor practices.

6-9 Points: Your organization is doing some of what you need to do to benefit people living in poverty. But you can do more. In addition to beginning a Truelift Assessment and joining Truelift’s “Community of Practice,” you can evaluate yourself with the Truelift Indicators Tool to understand exactly where you are on target and where there is room for you to improve your ability to reach, serve and create positive results for clients living in conditions of poverty.

10 – 12 Points: You have demonstrated exemplary performance across the three Pro-Poor Principles. Should you participate in a Truelift Assessment, your organization may be recognized as a “Truelift Leader” and awarded the Pro-Poor Seal of Excellence.

Truelift is a global initiative to push for accountability and learning in pro-poor development. Truelift is a trust mark – in microfinance and other forms of social business – to signify commitment to positive and enduring change for people effected by conditions of poverty. See

by Kate DeYoe, Truelift

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