>> 17 March 2012
Kiva.org, is an organization that allows people to lend money via the Internet to microfinance institutions in developing countries around the world and in the United States, which in turn lend the money to small businesses and students.
Since 2007 I've been a Kiva lender to dozens of people world wide. My portfolio consists of about 90% female artisans because as a woman who is the sole proprietor of my own business, I know about the challenges of getting started. What I sell on Etsy and eCRATER are just outlets for my creativity but they're not my main source of income. If it were, I'd be a failure so I can only imagine what it might be like to start a knitting business in Peru, a photography studio in Africa, or a bakery in the Middle East especially if you're a woman!
Under my true identity I've given out loans $25 at a time to women who are seeking to start a small business in Africa, South America, the South Pacific, and the former Soviet Union. Last year my New Year's resolution was to give out a loan monthly. This year I've renewed that pledge and today I'm hoping you join me.
It's really easy and it won't cost you a dime!
You see, there's a campaign from Reid Hoffman, the co-founder of LinkedIn, who has put up $1 million of his money to enable 40,000 people give $25 microloans to help those in need start farms and general stores that can support their families.
The process in making a loan is dead simple. This is how I do it: I browse and choose an entrepreneur I wish to fund. Kiva aggregates loan capital from me and other lenders and transfers it to the appropriate Field Partners to disperse to the entrepreneur chosen by the lender. As the entrepreneurs repay their loans, the Field Partners remit funds back to Kiva. As the loan is repaid, the Kiva lenders can withdraw their principal or re-lend it to another entrepreneur.
To start your first $25 loan for free just click on this link: http://www.kiva.org/invitedby/glamourbomb