What a lovely surprise last week to find an email in my inbox telling me that there was almost $50 sitting in my Kiva account, which had been paid back by borrowers. Late last year I decided to get involved with Kiva, which involves small micro loans being made to small business people, often in developing countries, but not always, to support them in their business. The loans cost $25, so I decided to put up $100 and make 4 loans. I really didn’t expect them to be paid back, but wasn’t concerned, as $100 was affordable for me. It was sort of a test case for me. If the money was paid back, I would go on and continue my support, but if not, well it really didn’t matter too much to my bank balance. So now, to my absolute delight, my $100 has almost been paid back, and I am able to make two more loans.
I blogged previously about our Genealogists for Families team. We now have 209 members and have made 841 micro loans which adds up to $22,350 loaned to borrowers.
Initially my loans went to Narcisa from Peru who used the loan to buy supplies such as sugar, milk, rice and oil for her grocery store and also to purchase animal feed; Nathalie from Togo used the loan to purchase by products to make juice to sell at her juice store; Lena from Armenia used the loan to purchase winter clothes and underclothes to sell in her clothing store; Elsa Aurora from Ecuador is a farmer and used the loan to buy seeds and fertilisers to enable her to grow her crops.
I have chosen to give my two new loans to Jecinta from Kenya who is a dairy farmer and will use the money to purchase a dairy cow and Laura from Peru who has a small grocery store and will use the loan to purchase bags of rice, sugar and other grocery items to sell.
Kiva micro loans are an easy way of supporting people who are attempting and doing their best to support themselves and their families. It is not a handout, which is mainly why I was attracted to this kind of donating. If you would like to make a donation, we would love you to join our Genealogists for Families team. You do not need to be a Genealogist. The only requirement is that you would like to support hardworking small business people that need a helping hand.