One of the many benefits of joining Club Asteria is access to thought leaders and experts from around the world.
The relationships we’ve created with these fascinating, and generous, personalities have enabled us to share an entire new world of ideas with you.
We’ve been hearing from our members who have used these resources to grow their businesses, and become successful despite the tough economic times we all face
That’s why we’re urging everyone to visit the Club Asteria Entrepreneur Education website. It’s open to our members and functions as an electronic resource that can be accessed from virtually anywhere in the world!
When you reach the page, you’ll have a variety of choices to make, but remember that every one of these resources is designed to help you learn and grow.
Successful entrepreneurs have tested the strategies and tactics you’ll find on this site in the real world – so you can be confident in using them!
Start your visit at the Thought Leaders page – here you’ll be able to read a quick biography of each person. You’ll also discover articles and videos created by these thought leaders, addressing the areas that mean the most to them. It’s like having a personal business coach at your fingertips!
The aptly named Resources Page contains a great deal of videos and other information that you can use in your daily business dealings. We’ve provided links to popular sites containing videos about everything from leadership to innovation. Take your time on this page, there’s a treasure trove of great ideas waiting to be discovered
Every month we’ll select a Club Asteria member and profile that person on our website. Through extensive interviews, you can learn how members just like you were able to find success, and repeat that formula again and again. Who knows? With hard work and the resources on this site, you might be the next Member of the Month!
Finally, the Business Tips page is updated on a regular basis, and contains plenty of fresh, cutting edge tips designed to help small business owners succeed. From hints on how to use Twitter to motivating employees and more, this is the page that contains information you can use instantly!
Club Asteria’s Entrepreneur Education site is home to resources and information that you can use in your own business. We work hard to update the site on a regular basis, so check back often to see what’s new.global affairs, thought leaders, club asteria, Club Asteria Entrepreneur Education website, Entrepreneur Education, entrepreneurial education
The e-Magazine is housed online, so it’s easy to access via laptop, tablet or mobile phone – and the latest one is ready for you to view and read. And best of all, share with all of your online friends, family and business associates!
When you click on this link, here are some of the articles you’ll immediately access:
- * 8 Easy to Understand Training Videos
- * Be the Change You Wish to See In the World
- * Over 150 Resources
- * Club Asteria’s Philanthropic Programs
- * Coming in to Your Wisdom Time
- * Your Monthly Success Tip
All of these articles, and more, are written by thought leaders from around the world, who are willing to share their insights, knowledge and experience with Club Asteria members.
If you’ve never accessed the e-Magazine before, a quick tip about the icons at the top of the page – they’re designed to make your reading experience easier! Starting from the left side of the page, here is an explanation of the icons.
- * Thumbs – allows you to view smaller images of each page; click each page and you’ll go directly to it!
- * Contents – displays a full list of stories in each issue.
- * Single Page – so you can read the issue a page at a time.
- * Full Screen – each page occupies your entire screen.
- * Arrow Buttons – clicking either one side or the other moves you forward or backward from the page you are currently viewing.
- * Zoom – increases the size of the page for easier reading.
- * Search – type in a keyword and you’ll see where it’s been mentioned in Empower Now!
- * Share – click this icon to share the e-Magazine’s link through a variety of social media platforms!
- * Question Mark – contains a full description of each icon button in the toolbar!
- * Pens – print out a page, make notes, or save the document in Portable Document Format (PDF), which is smaller and easier to email or save on your computer.
- * Gears – control settings such as turning sound on or off.
Remember the e-Magazine can be shared with all of the members in your social and business networks! Simply click the Share icon (two heads) at the top of the page and you’ll be given several options for sending out the link to your friends.Tags: thought leaders, type in a keyword, change you wish to see in the world, friends family
“Heaven never helps the man who will not act”
The quote is from an ancient philosopher, Sophocles, but it still has meaning and impact in today’s world – and also in regard to Club Asteria.
We’ve experienced monumental growth over the last year, and as we’ve gone through this positive experience, we’ve learned valuable lessons. In addition, we’ve also been able to increase our offerings, gain access to new resources and improve the lives of our members, their families and friends.
One of the changes that we wanted to talk about is the Network Director status. Over time, this position has become incredibly powerful and much sought after by Club Asteria members.
To begin, we have announced that starting on August 1, no one will be able to purchase Asterios. Instead, members will earn these, which in turn enhances the opportunity for everyone to achieve the position of Network Director and start to earn additional revenue.
The elimination of being able to purchase Asterios elevates the Network Director position, and guarantees that the leaders in our organization earned their spot through hard work, dedication, and the willingness to help others, not just themselves.
Please note that existing Network Directors will continue to enjoy their honored position with enhanced value of their Asterios and additional income opportunities as well as discounted purchasing opportunities available only to Network Directors.
There are other changes coming in the next several weeks and months – for starters Club Asteria members will have new opportunities to purchase products and services that we’ll be offering, including technology-related items like tablets and computers.
Besides purchasing these items, you’ll also be able to sell them online and in the traditional retail sense, which will open up an entirely new income stream – and a world of opportunity!
Club Asteria is committed to raising the world’s standard of living through entrepreneurship, and raising everyone’s vision to recognize others in need and helping people all over the world that are in dire circumstances.
Stay tuned and continue to keep checking the Club Asteria website and when you sign in, be sure to read the latest News stories that have been posted.
As always, be sure to spread the word to your family, friends and business associates about the many benefits of our organization – that way you’ll be helping yourself, and all of the members of our community!
Tags: global affairs, earn income, business loans, innovative programs, financial freedom, philanthropic assistance
One of the most misunderstood places in the world is Haiti. The devastating earthquake earlier this year has brought Haiti into the world stage, but the attention hasn’t gone very far in helping the situation. Tens of thousands of people who had very little to begin with, have lost everything. The economic fallout alone has been devastating, and thousands of individuals who relied on their small microbusinesses for a living have been hard pressed to keep going.
These informal vendors and operators of very small portable businesses, who the locals call the ti machann, often sell goods directly from their homes or from street stalls. But the earthquake caused so many to lose their homes—and the ti machann have had to rebuild.
Now I know a lot of prominent businesspeople who have suffered setbacks. I remember in the San Francisco earthquake in ’89, businesses that were worth many millions of dollars were forced to shut their doors forever. And if a millionaire businessman can’t rebuild after a disaster, what chance does a poor ti machann selling cooking oil out of her home have?
Rebuilding even a small business takes money and determination. Determination is free, but construction and sales goods cost money—and Haiti’s credit market is all but frozen. The only hope is from the handful of microlenders that have focused on the poor country, and the loans have given these people a chance to rebuild.
Where else will the money come from? Nations around the world have pledged support, but very little of the support has arrived. Microlending provides a lifeline and it’s providing it now. Even the microlenders are facing difficulties though in the aftermath of the disaster, and FInca Haiti, one of the largest microlenders in the country, had to write off about a third of its portfolio after so many of their own clients perished in the earthquake or lost their homes and businesses. But still, Finca Haiti and the other microlenders continue. Another microlender, Fonkoze, started by a Haitian priest in the 1990s, has been able to broaden its own program. According to a recent story in the New York Times, Fonkoze even has a program that lends not money, but goats and chickens—which in rural Haiti is even better than cash. Recipients can sell the milk and eggs to generate a regular income. Fonkoze made a loan to 30-year-old Marie, who lives in a mud house with her extended family. She was able to receive two chickens and a goat from the bank.
Now it may seem strange to go to a bank and make a withdrawal of livestock—but it’s a great idea and one that works. Marie has already started selling eggs from her house, and has been able to save up enough money to expand her inventory, and has even built a shed for her goat.
Microlending is an opportunity to help those who the conventional lenders don’t want to help. Club Asteria actively supports microlending in Haiti and throughout the world. We encourage you to join our program today.
Nepal’s women are amongst the poorest in the world and this adds to their feeling of helplessness and misery, considering the society that they live in. During my visits to Nepal, I have noticed the grinding poverty and the terrible conditions. The majority of these women live in rural Nepal, where the primary activity is subsistence-level farming. These poor Nepalese women who lack confidence due to illiteracy and discrimination are rarely able to access the credit necessarily to pursue microenterprises and any other income-generating projects.
Nepal is a beautiful country that has always been a favorite of mine during my frequent travels in Asia. But for several reasons, it has remained mired in dire economic straits, with most people except those in upscale Kathmandu the capital, living a hand-to-mouth existence. Manasi was one such woman living in a remote village near Pokhara, the alluring hill resort city, surrounded by lakes and mountains. I met her during one of the outreach programs of a local NGO.
The splendor of the landscape does not mitigate the poverty that is evident in the shabby hut and squalor around it. A small vegetable garden grows potatoes, leeks and radishes. Manasi has a family of 4; her husband, mother-in-law and one baby daughter. It is a constant struggle to survive, with very little income from the few hens they reared and the 2 cows. Manasi’s day began at the crack of dawn, when she took the cattle out to graze and ended late at night after she cooked the frugal meal for the family. Her husband did little or no work and was regular with his drinking binges every night.
Manasi tries her best like all the women in the small village; working hard, looking after the children, tending to the vegetable patch, taking care of the livestock and generally living a life of total drudgery with little hope for the future. It was then that a microfinance loan initiative came right to her doorstep. Working through a local NGO, local women farmers were given 100% loans working on a group guarantee. Manasi received an amount that to her was an incredible amount of money, around $500 through a direct outreach to mobilize rural women in her area.
Manasi increased her landholding, which gave her a bigger area for her vegetables. Then, she bought more hens and finally managed to repair the roof of her hut. From a position of abject poverty and no say in decision-making, today Manasi runs her poultry business, sells her vegetable and has also more cows. Group training for women has given Manasi and other women of her village a better social status, whereby she is able to look after her family and also admonish her husband when needed. She is an empowered woman with her own income and can look forward to a brighter future.
I am happy to say that this microloan extended to Manasi and the other women has not just helped them but also the next generation, as women now keep their daughters in school longer and also delay their marriages until the right age.
These stories of women’s empowerment in places like Nepal gives us a sense of achievement in Club Asteria. We support such microloan programs all over the world and we ask you to join us to augment our efforts. Just a small amount of money can make an enormous difference in someone’s life and you can be part of it!Tags: vegetable garden, additional income, mouth existence, lakes and mountains, beautiful country
I’d like to tell you a story from two different sides. While in Thailand I spent some time with an expatriate who was living in Bangkok. By all measures, a pretty good guy. He was good to his family, didn’t have a violent bone in his body, and his friends thought highly of him. He was the guy you’d say “would give you the shirt off his back.”
His life in Thailand was great. He enjoyed having a big house just outside of Chiang Mai, and since he was semi-retired, had plenty of time to enjoy the tropical country and make frequent trips to the sea. He was the envy of his friends back home in cold and snowy Chicago. Back there, he was just an ordinary working man, and when he retired, he was granted a small pension. Together with social security, he found that in Chicago it was barely enough to live on. He tried it for about a year, but soon got tired of his small apartment, and having to pinch pennies to get by. He took his savings and moved to Thailand, where he met a lovely younger Thai lady and married her, rented a spacious house with a yard that had palm trees in it, and employed a full-time housekeeper.
One thing he always boasted about to his friends back home was having a housekeeper. He never had household help back home, nor did any of his friends. It just wasn’t part of his reality. We were visiting one day and I heard him on the phone to one of his friends back in Chicago. “Yeah,” he said. “I got a housekeeper now, full-time, it’s great! And what’s even better is that it just costs me $150 a month!” It was almost as if he were talking about getting a bargain on a household appliance rather than an actual person’s services.
Of course, in Thailand that’s about the going rate, and it might be even less if the housekeeper is a Burmese immigrant. It just wouldn’t occur to most people that this amount of money causes families to live in desperate poverty. I’ve talked to a lot of people with housekeepers in Thailand, and very few of them have considered paying more than the going rate. It’s not that they’re skinflints, most of them are nice people, but they’re just buying a service at the going rate and don’t think any more of it.
A lot of these housekeepers don’t speak much English and I don’t speak very much Thai, but one day I did encounter a friend’s housekeeper with whom I was able to communicate. With no education to speak of, Lek, my acquaintance’s 28-year-old housekeeper, didn’t have a lot of options and was grateful for the job, which really wasn’t too hard, since her boss was an older single man whose house was never that messy to begin with. Lek still lived with her parents and four sisters. “I’d like to have a business some day,” she said. She dreamed of having a little shophouse with a small store and noodle shop. She and her family had often talked about turning their older family home into a shophouse, but just never had the resources to do it.
Because Lek and her family didn’t have any education and were unable to read, they didn’t know much about microloans, and just assumed that they were for other people who had more money and education. I explained to her that just wasn’t the case, and before you know it, she was on her way to apply.
The day she quit her housekeeping job was the happiest day in her life. With a small loan, Lek and her family were able to open up their shophouse, and it’s made a huge difference in their lives. One thing she wanted to do more than anything was to send her younger sister Fon to the local community college. Fon had just graduated from high school—the first in her family to do so, and that was a big accomplishment, but Lek wanted even more for her sister.
The next time I saw Lek, her shop house was open and she was happily serving noodles to her hungry clientele, and I saw Fon walking home in her college uniform. She met her goal! And what’s even happier about this situation is that when I talked to Lek’s mother, she told me that she even planned to send Lek herself to school.
Microlending makes a big difference with small amounts of money. Club Asteria actively supports microlending programs, and we encourage you to join our program and make more happy endings like this one.Tags: pretty good guy, financial opportunity, global affairs, earn income
An article in the Bangkok Post gave us some encouraging news. The Thai cabinet has approved a plan to set up a subsidiary to the Thailand Post, to provide microfinance loans to low-income individuals. Applicants need only go to the post office to apply.
Using the post office as a channel for distributing microfinance loans is an excellent idea. So many people who could benefit from microfinance simply don’t know where to apply. Microfinance lenders don’t usually have the big marketing budgets of regular banks, so they’re often harder to find.
Using the post office as a vehicle for application and delivery of microloans isn’t a new idea, and it’s already been used with some success in other areas. Earlier this year the First Micro Finance Bank Ltd. Pakistan inked a deal with the Pakistan post office to renew a similar deal to use post offices to provide microloans. The Pakistan deal has been in place since 2008, and has been very useful in delivering microloan services to rural populations.
In Thailand, according to the Information and Communications Technology Minister, there are about 18 million low-income earners in Thailand who don’t have any access to loans, and the Thailand Post deal will give them a useful and viable alternative. Now, any person in the country will be able to go to any one of the 1,200 post offices throughout the country to apply.
Those sorts of numbers don’t always mean much when you first look at them. Eighteen million people with no access to loans—out of a total population of about 66 million. Yes, it’s an “emerging nation” with an industrial infrastructure, but it’s still poor. As I’ve traveled throughout some of the world’s poorest regions, it always strikes me that “poor” is a relative term. In the United States, “poor” has a completely different meaning than it does in a country that has no social safety net. Thailand does have a minimum wage, which has helped—but again, that’s a relative figure. Minimum wage in the United States would be quite a windfall to a poor Thai working in a textile factory in Bangkok, where minimum wage is 206 baht per day—about US$6.86. That’s per day, not per hour!
Many of these working poor would benefit from a microloan if they knew that the program existed. A big part of the challenge—perhaps even a bigger challenge than actually getting the funding to support the program—is just getting the word out and letting people know that it’s there. I’ve seen it make such a big difference in peoples’ lives. Like 34-year-old Kaew. A mother of four that never made it past elementary school, Kaew used a microloan to open up a small shop in Bangkok’s legendary Chatuchak Market, the largest open-air bazaar in Southeast Asia. Her shop now employs three other family members, and she’s even thinking about starting a second location across town with the help of one of her cousins.
Club Asteria actively promotes and supports microlending programs all over the world. We encourage you to join us, and help make the world a better place.Tags: bank ltd, thailand post, financial opportunity
Hi, I’m Andrea Lucas, Managing Director of Club-Asteria. Club-Asteria is an online global membership organization that provides education, business opportunities, e-commerce and innovative programs to empower our members. Please visit our site at www.club-asteria.com to learn about our programs and services and our goals for the future and read about our philanthropic activities in the News.
I have now started the series of blogs so I can share my views and experiences with all of my family and friends and the extended community of people that are interested in global affairs.
Everything in my life that I have lived through – both good and bad, has brought me to this moment in time. I now have the ability to contribute to some of society’s most critical and pressing issues – the plight of hundreds of millions of people that still live in poverty despite the advances in our social network and technology. Human beings just like you and I who don’t enjoy the simple advantages of clean drinking water, reliable electricity, adequate shelter, the simplest of health care, food and education.
As I have traveled the world in my position in the financial community I have experienced first- hand this injustice and tragedy of humanity. My life today is dedicated to not only sharing the plight of these undeserved people of the world but more importantly to serve as a catalyst of change to truly benefit their individual lives. I hope that you will enjoy reading about my many experiences and the people I meet and can lend support to.
My blogs will touch on a variety of subjects, from e-commerce to financial support to philanthropic assistance to most importantly, education that can benefit each of the individuals and families that we are seeking to help.Tags: global membership, philanthropic assistance, innovative programs, life today, human beings, asteria club, membership organization