I’ve been a member of an online micro loan community called Kiva for a while now. The idea is very simple: Entrepreneurs worldwide, who may not have access to ‘normal’ modes of funding, ask for a loan on Kiva.org. Those who want to help out can lend them all or just part of the loan (minimum $25). They invest the money, reap the benefits, then repay the loan you made in full, leaving you with your original stake which you can then re-invest.
I’ve got $75 in there at the moment (soon to be $100) which I have been able to use to help 7 small businesses all over the world. 4 of them have paid me back in full. The other 3, my most recent loans, are in the process of paying me back. It’s quick and easy to do, there’s no hidden costs, and they’ve got a 98.95% repayment rate, which is better than any high street bank. That’s because the people they help are just like you and me. All they want is a chance to make their lives better.
If you need any more inspiration watch this TED video from Kiva’s co-founder Jessica Jackley. It’s a very warm and touching presentation that I found incredibly moving.
Please give some serious consideration to investing $25 and maybe changing someone’s life. It’s a meal to us, but it could be a new beginning for them. Thank you.