There’s a strong tradition of giving to charities and thinking of those in need at Christmas, and long may it continue. As I look for international organisations to donate to this year, I thought I’d also support something closer to home by spotlighting microfinance here.

There are a number of brilliant efforts across the country that offer no-cost or low-cost borrowing solutions to those in need. This is called “microfinance” because of the small loan amounts involved (typically below $5,000, but some go much higher). These loans are specifically for certain circumstances, but they are undoubtedly a real opportunity for some.

Since most of us borrow so expensively on conventional cards and loans with nosebleed interest rates and fees, microfinance solutions are a true gift.

The word on the street, surprisingly, is that there’s a lot of microfinance money sloshing around looking for a home. So the funds are there, but providers at times struggle to find people to lend to. I wonder if it’s partly because folks have not heard of these options? Perhaps this post can be a bit of a remedy.

Do you know someone who could benefit?

Microfinance providers in New Zealand

As you’d expect, these microfinance providers only lend to some people, for some things and on certain conditions, so it makes sense to contact them directly to find out those details and how to apply. (Special thanks to the team at Good Shepherd for bringing these organisations together and sharing this list.)


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Comments (6)

  • Ricky Frewen

    11:07am | 16 May 2016

    HI is there a micro-financing in southland

  • Sandra

    3:47pm | 2 Mar 2016

    Thank you for this post. I had heard of micro-financing in India but hadn't realised we had a system here in NZ. Much appreciated.

  • Terry Martin

    3:46pm | 2 Mar 2016

    These are all good but I noticed there is nothing in Waikato

  • Sigrid Speidel

    3:46pm | 2 Mar 2016

    Another option is QIET - Quaker Investment Ethical Trust, active nation-wide. Kinds of social loans include 1. Social loans to non-profits and social enterprises.The borrower has social goals as its purpose. Eg a loan to Trade Aid. 2. Community development loans to micro and small businesses. The purposes of the funding are income generation and job creation, which are the social goals. Eg Loans funded by the Trust but made and managed by partner agencies such as Just Dollars and the Nelson Ethical Loans Trust. 3. Loans to low-income families and individuals to help break the cycle of poverty by enabling low-income families and individuals to escape from loan sharks, manage their debt, meet expenses and/or to start building their net worth. Eg. debt consolidations loans, mortgages and personal loans. More info under

  • Dawn Petterse

    3:46pm | 2 Mar 2016

    Any microfinance providers in Palmerston North?

  • Sylvia Bowden

    3:46pm | 2 Mar 2016

    This is an awesome opportunity for some people.