http://www.kiva.org/ is a non profit organization that empowers individuals to lend to an entrepreneur across the globe. By combining microfinance with the internet, Kiva is creating a global community of people connected through lending. Up to date kiva lenders have facilitated over $129 million in loans.
I love the fact that when your loan is paid back you can re-loan it to someone else and it just keeps rotating. Of course, you can always remove your funds if you desire. The money was not donated.
There is a risk that your loan may not be returned. Conditions in some countries are so dire that some business people may not be able to pay you back. In Kiva experience all my loans have been paid back. What I find crazy is that if a loan was defaulted on, it is $25. I can affort to risk that. What does $25 buy us here? Certainly not an opportunity to better our lives, however, the enjoyment I get from lending that $25 is worth far more.
The loan amounts vary and the higher the loan the more kiva lenders it takes to fulfill the amount.
Kiva was started by a film crew who were on location in a tpoor country. They were struck with the thought that small amounts of money can make huge changes in peoples lives.
I have been fortunate to have been given support and encouragement throughout my career. By participating in Kiva, I can pass that on to business people who really need it.
I choose to loan to women who mostly work in fashion, as I do. Meet a couple of my favorite entrepreneurs.
Loan amount $1,050.
In the village of Jasana Capallino you can find Teofila's business. She raises cattle, which is a trade that she learned from her parents who always made sure she knew how to support herself. She sells her cattle at the Huancane fair, where they are in high demand because of how well they are cared for and fed.
What she likes best about her job is to let the animals graze, as she enjoys the outdoors. With 20 years in this trade, she believes that the most difficult part is to deliver her cattle to the Sunday fairs where they sell. For the future of her business, she hopes to increase the quantity of her stock so that can increase her earnings. Loan amount $700.
Okay, Teofila is not involved in fashion but I adore her hat. I have started a Kiva group, think about joining me in becoming a Kiva lender. It really does your heart good!
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