I first met Kiva a few years ago whilst reading “Half the Sky”. I was intrigued by the notion that an individual with a few extra bucks in their bank account could get involved with microfinancing through actually being the lender, and like usual lending, get repaid as the loan gets repaid.
Soon thereafter my friend Ashleigh wrote about her (positive) experiences with Kiva on her blog, and with that endorsement I decided to give it a shot.
I put in $150. At $25 contributions, I could make six. I could do without the money for the near future, and if I needed it later on, I could cash it out. What was there to lose?
Since that time – and without ever adding a dime to my initial $150 deposit – I have made 18 loans to people all over the globe. That’s $450 worth of invested capital. And I can still pull out any time.
My love for Kiva has only grown in the time I’ve been funding through them. They make it incredibly easy to put stagnant money to good use, the website is easy to use, and they really stay on top of their communication.
As I get older, I want to become a better global citizen. Kiva has been a painless, accessible step in that direction. I certainly want to do more, but this is an incredibly easy thing I can do along the way.
Have you used Kiva? What do think of it? What other things have you done recently (or would like to do one day soon) to grow as a global citizen?