Microfinance Lunch Break

22 maart 2022 12:00 - 14:00

Is microfinance the best way to finance smallholder farmers?

Tuesday 22nd of March 2022 - at 12.00 p.m. (CET)


  • In person at the auditorium of KBC Bank, Havenlaan 2, 1080 Brussels
  • online participation via Livestream

Practical arrangements for participation

  • Covid Safe Tickets and masks are no longer required.
  • Start: beginning at 12 o’clock sharp
  • Parking: we advise to use public transport or leave your car in a nearby car park. Parking at KBC is not available.
Guestspeakers: Jean-Marc Debricon (Alterfin) & Dominique Morel (SOS-Faim)
Price: Free participation
Language of the conference: english (only)

Is microfinance the best way to finance smallholder farmers?

Answering questions like this usually start with ‘yes but…’ or ‘no but…’ 

Dominique Morel and Jean-Marc Debricon will share their views and experiences in the field. Although the important role of smallholder farmers in feeding the world is well recognized, the financing of their activities remains a challenge.

Not only is it difficult to identify the financial needs and the most appropriate financial mechanisms for this group, it is also a challenge to decide what constitutes the best offering of financing for them, and what the relevant terms and conditions should be. 

During this session, we will also look at the gap between supply and demand. How do we explain the gap and how can we bridge it? How specifically can microfinance institutions - along with other providers of financial services - contribute to bridging this gap.


  • 12.00 p.m.: Welcome and introduction by Franky Depickere, Managing Director Cera,
    Chairman BRS
  • 12.10 p.m.: Is microfinance the best way to finance smallholder farmers?
    by Dominique Morel (SOS Faim) and Jean-Marc Debricon (Alterfin)
  • 12.40 p.m.: Questions & Answers
  • 13.00 p.m.: Lunch Buffet

Jean-Marc Debricon (Alterfin)

General Manager

Jean-Marc has been involved in a number of social impact and non-profit organizations active in the developing world. Since January 2015, he is the General Manager of Alterfin cv, a financial cooperative with a social mission, active in 40 low/low-middle income countries and reaching out to 1.4 million people. 

Jean-Marc is the founder of Green Shoots Foundation, a UK charity promoting the transfer of knowledge in Asia. He is the founding director of Children of the Mekong, the UK branch of “Enfants du Mekong” a French NGO supporting children and poor communities across Southeast Asia. He was a director of the Research, Education, Direction (RED) Foundation, a UK charity providing long term medical assistance and training for medical staff treating AIDS patients in Asia and Eastern Europe. 

Prior to that, he was an investment banker for 16 years and served as a Portfolio Manager for the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and as a Managing Director in the global financial markets division of Rabobank International, responsible for a budget of €100 million and a team of 40 people. 
Jean-Marc holds a Masters in Business Administration and DESS in International Business from Université Paris IX Dauphine.


Dominique Morel (SOS Faim)

Expert in rural development

Expert in rural development, Dominique Morel has been working for 25 years in NGOs and development cooperation institutions like Enable. With experience in Asia, Latin America and Africa, she has deepened in the last 4 years her knowledge of farmer organizations needs and civil society dynamics as manager of Senegal portfolio for the French speaking NGO SOS FAIM.

She has also been member of Alterfin’s board of directors for 10 years and intervenes regularly for SOS FAIM in the Solvay’s “European master in microfinance”.