Today President Obama presented 16 Medals of Freedom. On July 30th, BarbinMd had a story about the recipients: http://www.dailykos.com/... . I can't find any other comments or diaries about Muhammad Yunus from the last year.
One of today's recipients was Muhammad Yunus of Bangladesh, the inventer of the concept of microfinance. The idea is to give tiny loans--maybe only $30--to poor villagers, originally all women, to help them start tiny businesses. Huge mountains of prejudice need to be overcome. The program has been SPECTACULARLY successful, and it is now expanding all around the globe, even into the United States. Some of the best examples are in poor areas of New York City.
You can read more about him here: http://en.wikipedia.org/... .
He won the 2006 Nobel Peace Prize, which is when I first heard of him, and later that year first heard him speak.
This will be a very short diary, since I'm very tired from another emergency appeal brief.
I just saw Mr. Yunus speaking at the National Press Club in Washington on C-SPAN. The man is a saint for our times. He radiates a kind of calm and clarity and spiritual conviction that is amazingly inspiring and refreshing.
He truly believes we can totally wipe out global poverty and injustice by turning to a new model of business that he calls "social business," which is business for the sake of goals beyond making money.
Westerners habitually laugh at this kind of thing--except that he's doing better with all of his incredibly many enterprises all around the globe than 99 percent of western bankers.
He has a luminous look in his eyes that, I believe, is clearly the look of a real saint.
I had a client from Bangladesh, a Ph.D., who was a disciple of his, spreading the ideas of microfinance around the world. These are people to watch! These are people to pray for. These are people to follow.