It’s been a while since we’ve made a Kiva loan. So long that we had enough money in our Kiva account to make nearly 5 loans this month.
I love that! FIVE!
This is micro financing at its best. People in faraway lands need money to help start or grow their businesses, and lots of people come together to make up that money in lots of US$25. No one stands to lose much if everything should go sour, but the person trying to etch a living out of substandard land or through a market stall gets that hand up they so desperately need to possibly propel them towards being able to better provide for themselves and their families.
We make nothing from these loans. No interest is charged on our behalf, although the field partner who interviews and arranges the finance does to cover their costs.
In fact, we only stand to lose from the money we lend. I’ve lost $30 through 20 loans with currency fluctuations and $30 through 4 loans defaulting (even the worst paid back $11 of my $25).
Yep, worst investment ever!
But sooooo good for the soul.
Here’s the good bit –
Of the $466 I’ve put into my account (which includes $125 I’ve given as gifts and $41 I’ve donated to Kiva’s administration directly), meaning I’m basically working with $300 capital, I’ve made $5350 in loans for 214 people around the world.
That’s right – my $300 has allowed me to finance $5350 in loans.
How? Because they pay it back so I get to reloan it.
When you give $300 to most charities which help people, you never see it again. I can even withdraw my repaid funds if I want it back. Because you can start with as little as US$25, I see this as the perfect way to help your fellow man without breaking your bank.
Plus, because the loans stretch out to 81 countries, you can really spread the love and teach your kids about their world. It’s a great conversation starter when you see the conditions some of these people live in and why they need the money.
When it came time for Miss9 to pick someone to help, it didn’t take her long. We narrowed the search criteria down to female + individual + Eastern Europe + retail
“Her!” Miss9 said, pointing at the screen.
I wasn’t surprised with the lady she’d chosen. The woman, Tea, wants to start a general store and that is all Miss9’s wanted to do since she found out that’s where all the lollies are kept.
Here’s what Tea’s application said: Tea, who is 29 years old young woman, lives in Rustavi city with her husband and mother-in-law. The family members are temporarily unemployed and have poor living condition, as getting no income during the month.
I started reading it to Miss9, but she wasn’t really interested. She’d been reading ahead.
“I only care about the last line,” said Miss9.
Tea will be able to create better living conditions for her family.
What other reason do you need to help these people?
So far 235 people from Big Family Little Income have joined me on Kiva and made 1597 loans worth an incredible $39,925 !!!
If you’d like to check out what Kiva does, and if maybe it’s something you or you & your family would like to experience, here’s a link to the Kiva site. Just have a look around. Check out the stories of the people asking for a bit of a hand. Get the kids involved.
It’s all incredibly moving and really makes you appreciate what we have in this country.
Some screen shots from my Kiva account, just to prove I’m not making this stuff up.
Also, this is NOT a sponsored post. We just really like helping people in this way.
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Raising a family on little more than laughs.