Twenty-two cents: Muhammad Yunus and the Village Bank
Growing up in Bangladesh, Muhammad Yunus witnessed extreme poverty all around and was determined to eradicate it. In 1976, as an Economics professor, Muhammad met a young craftswoman in the village of Jobra who needed to borrow five taka (twenty-two cents) to buy materials. No bank would lend such a small amount to an uneducated woman, so she was forced to borrow from corrupt lenders who charged an unfair interest rate, and left her without enough profit to buy food.
Muhammad realized that what stood in the way of her financial security was just a few cents. Inspired, Muhammad founded Grameen Bank where people could borrow small amounts of money to start a job, and then pay back the bank without exorbitant interest charges. Over the next few years, Muhammad s compassion and determination changed the lives of millions of people by loaning the equivalent of more than ten billion US dollars in micro-credit. This has also served to advocate and empower the poor, especially women, who often have limited options.
Twenty-two Cents is an inspiring story of economic innovation and a celebration of how one person like one small loan can make a positive difference in the lives of many.
A 2015 SABA Award Book. From SABA, " Twenty-Two Cents smartly chronicles the life and inspiration behind Nobel Peace Prize winner, Muhammad Yunus, and the internationally transformative Grameen Bank’s micro-lending system. Coupled with rich illustrations that vibrantly capture the essence and depth of Yunus’ experiences, this poignant picture book easily lends itself to readers of all ages. Includes an afterword and author’s source notes. (Grades 2-5).
Age: 6 and up
Number of Pages: 40
Publisher: Lee & Low Books
Author: Paula Yoo ; Jamel Akib
Dimensions: 0.5 x 9 x 11.2 inches
KitaabWorld Book Review: This picture book biography of Muhammad Yunus, the Nobel Peace Prize winner and founder of the micro-credit lending Grameen Bank is an inspiring tale of empowerment. The book begins with his childhood and includes background information about the political and economic situations of the time. This is a great book for introducing kids to breaking free from the cycle of poverty. It is also an inspirational message of how one person can improve the world. Readers of this book will be encouraged to start asking their own hard questions and perhaps find their own solutions to current and future problems. (See lesson plan here)
This book is also part of our INSPIRING MUSLIM LEADERS AND THINKERS book list.