4.1.3. Higher Education Loan
The higher Education Loan Programme was introduced in 1997 for the children of Grameen families so that they can pursue education at the highest level. Grameen Bank introduced the Higher Education Loan programme in 1997 to open opportunities for talented children of its borrowers to pursue higher education in medicine, engineering, agriculture and other higher education programmes at the graduate and post-graduate levels. The loans are intended to cover all expenses incurred by the students from the beginning to the end of the study period. The loans cover admission fees, course fees, cost of stationery, food and accommodation and other related expenses. Since its inception, the programme has distributed 40,804 loans worth BDT 1506.65 million (USD 22.27 million). In 2010 alone, 10,951 students were sanctioned loans. Jessore zone has the most number of students (3,655) receiving higher education loans, with Khulna zone second (3,509). The Atalia Dumuria branch under Khulna zone has given the highest number of student loans (158). By December 2010, 47,851 students received higher education loan of them 45,404 students are studying at various universities: 503 are studying in medical colleges, 822 are studying engineering, and 1122 are studying in other professional institutions. The following table shows the total number of Higher Education loans amount and number of student.

DEGREE/DISCIPLINE .............. Number ......... Amount (BDT)
Masters (General) .............. 1,439 .......... 30,751,510
Bachelor degree (Honors) ....... 37,286 ......... 141,1784,012
MBA ............................ 79 ............. 1,726,300
BBA ............................ 316 ............ 9,510,015
B. Sc. (Engineering) ........... 709 ............ 20,303,454
M. Sc. (Agriculture) ........... 94 ............. 2,384,808
B Sc. (Agriculture) ............ 447 ............ 13,767,160
Degree in Medicine ............. 434 ............ 16,419,450
Total: ......................... 40,804 ......... 1,506,646,709

Table: Disbursement of Higher Education Loans Up to December, 2010.

Process of Higher Education loan: Every year Grameen Bank Branches want application to its members whose children are studying in colleges and universities. Branch manager evaluate the applications and send them to the Area office with recommendation. Amount of money: Up to last year, the amount was 77,000/= taka and concern student get it in four installment. From this the amount is creased up to 1, 00,000/=

4.1.3.1. Scholarships for the children of Grameen members
In addition to student loans mentioned earlier, the Bank offers scholarships to the children of Grameen members to ease their financial constraints for payment of school dues, purchase of books and stationery. At least 50% of the scholarship money must go to girls and the remaining 50% will given to both boys and girls based on overall performance. About 23,000 children, at various levels of school education, were awarded the scholarships during the year 2010 under review. It brings the aggregate number students since the inception of the programme to 118,887 up to December, 2010 involving an amount of BDT 175.69 million (USD 2.54 million).

Rules for Grameen Bank Scholarship:
Grameen Bank scholarship is given to the HSC and lower level classes. It is provided by Branch. Currently each branch can provide scholarship to only 10 students. In five levels, branch office select 10 students from it members? children for their outstanding performance in their respective class and it evaluate on their examination result. One student gets it for performing in cultural sector. They are selected for one year.

Level ............. Number of Student ...... Amount
Primary Level .......... 1 ................. 100*12=1200
Junior Level ........... 2 ................. 125*12=1500
Secondary Level ........ 3 ................. 150*12=1800
Intermediate Level ..... 3 ................. 175*12=2100
Cultural sector ........ 1 ................. 175*12=210

Table: Amount of Money for each Scholarship, 2010

4.1.4. Struggling [Beggars] Members Programme

Begging is the last decision of survival for a poor person, unless he or she turns into crimes or other forms of illegal activities. Among the beggars there are disabled, blind and related people as well as old people with ill health. To reach out to the beggars, Grameen Bank has taken up a special programme in 2002 called Struggling Members Programmes exclusively for the beggar. Over 112,615 beggars have joined the programmes. Total amount of 154.99 million taka has been disbursed among them. 19497 beggars left begging and are making a living as door to door sales persons. The objective of the programme is to provide financial services to the beggars to help them find a dignified livelihood; send their children to school and to make them graduate into becoming regular Grameen Bank members. We wish to make sure that no one in the Grameen Bank villages has to beg for survival.

Basic Features of the Program
Existing rules of Grameen Bank do not apply to beggar members; they make up their own rules. All loans will be interest-free. Loans can be of a very long term, in order to make repayment installments very small. For example, for a loan to buy a quilt or a mosquito-net, many borrowers are paying BDT 2.00 per week. Beggar members are covered under life insurance and loan insurance programmes without incurring any cost. Groups and Centers are being encouraged to become patrons of this type of members.

Each member receives an identity badge with her picture and name, and Grameen Bank logo. She can display this as she goes about her daily life, to let everybody know that she is a Grameen Bank member and this national institution stands behind her. Members are not required to give up begging, but are encouraged to take up an additional income-generating activity like selling popular consumer items door to door, or at the place of begging.

As of 31st December, 2009 cumulative members under this programme reaches at 112,826 out of them 108,186 are women. All the zones have already come under this programme. By this time 2,562 branches of 268 areas have implemented the programme. So far BDT 142.43 million has been disbursed and BDT 108.53 million has already been repaid. The Struggle members? saving balance stood BDT 7.78 million.