Wednesday, January 14, 2009

How to Change the World

Thanks to Roberta Hill from 1-focus, I stumbled upon Kiva.org, a philantropic website that organizes loans for entrepreneurs in the developing world (strange - I haven't used the word "developing world" for quite a time, my friend Gil use to say the 2/3 world), anyhow. So...

Kiva's mission is to connect people through lending for the sake of alleviating poverty.

Kiva is the world's first person-to-person micro-lending website, empowering individuals to lend directly to unique entrepreneurs in the developing world.

Interesting that just today I discovered also Prosper.com, a US based and US focused micro-credit website organizing loans to ordinary people.

The people you see on Kiva's site are real individuals in need of funding - not marketing material. When you browse entrepreneurs' profiles on the site, choose someone to lend to, and then make a loan, you are helping a real person make great strides towards economic independence and improve life for themselves, their family, and their community. Throughout the course of the loan (usually 6-12 months), you can receive email journal updates and track repayments. Then, when you get your loan money back, you can relend to someone else in need.

You can also join a group of funders, such as the one of Roberta Hill / sustaining change in order to increase the momentum.

Kiva reports about a total volume of $29,414,145 of completed loan terms. I think Stowe Boyd was right when he said that social collaboration on the web is the last hope for the world.

1 comment:

  1. Holger, thanks so much for the "plug" about Kiva AND a link to our Lending Team Sustaining Change. It is my personal goal and that of 1-Focus to reach out personally to 100 of our friends and colleagues and tell them about Kiva.

    I have just posted a a fantastic, inspiring, funny 11 minute video on how Kiva.org works - create by a volunteer.
    http://1-focus.com/sustainingchange/archives/187

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