Share the love!
This Valentine's Day, share the love around the world!
Kiva.org allows anyone with at least $25 dollars to spare to provide a loan to an entrepreneur in the developing world. These entrepreneurs are pre-screened by organizations in the developing country, which means that the recipients of the loans are known to be hard-working, honest people who need (what seems to us) a little extra money to improve their business.
What seems to us to be a small amount of money can dramatically change the life of a poor person and their family. Many people around the world have the knowledge and ability to work, but don't have the start-up capital for a business. Kiva's loans most often (from what I read) cover that capital, and so allow a person to see the fruits of their labor instead of being paid a pittance for what they do, and to support their family where they could not before.
And the best thing about Kiva? Almost anyone can afford it! The smallest amount you can invest is $25, as your loan will add with the loans of others to total a full loan for one of the entrepreneurs. With Kiva's help, you (yes YOU) can do something to change someone's life.
If you invest in an entrpreneur, you not only get the benefit of knowing you helped somebody out of a tight spot, but you also get to follow their journey. You will receive journal updates about your entrpreneur and their business, in which someone from the in-country orgnaization will write about what they're able to do now that they have more money to work with. Eventually (usually within a year, according to the site), your money will be repaid and you'll have the option of reinvesting or cashing out.
While Kiva loans don't earn interest, they do earn you the knowledge that you've helped someone, and they allow you to make someone's life just a little better. What better way is there to show that you care about the world than investing in the future of individuals and their families?