I was going to write a rambling post about Facebook and social networking sites today, but I found something much more worthwhile to do. I discovered a short video about a site called KIVA through Guy Kawasaki’s blog. Kiva is a P2P micro finance site that connects normal people in developed countries with entrepreneurs and small business owners who are making a difference in their communities in developing nations.

Tsevi from TogoI’ve just joined kiva and contributed $25 towards a $750 loan for Tsèvi Bedzra a 29 year old barber in Togo in Africa. He’s applied for the loan to buy electric clippers and other equipment for his barber shop, he feels this will enable him to be more profitable and better support his son.

All of the entrepreneurs on KIVA are vetted and approved by loan officers from micro-finance organisations on the ground. When Tzevi’s load application was approved his picture was taken and posted to the site with his details, where I found him.

You can go to Kiva’s website and lend to someone in the developing world who needs a loan for their business – like raising goats, selling vegetables at market or making bricks. Each loan has a picture of the entrepreneur, a description of their business and how they plan to use the loan so you know exactly how your money is being spent – and you get updates letting you know how the business is going. The best part is, when the entrepreneur pays back their loan you get your money back – and Kiva’s loans are managed by microfinance institutions on the ground who have a lot of experience doing this, so you can trust that your money is being handled responsibly.

Kiva - loans that change lives

Explore posts in the same categories: Business, Collective Intelligence, Connectivity, Conscious Capitalism, Social Networking, Uncategorized, Web 2.0

One Comment on “”

  1. peteboucher Says:

    Tsévi is most likely quite happy today. According to the RSS feed for this case the loan has been disbursed by Gloria Estela Diaz at Microfund Togo. I tried to find a contact for Gloria to thank her and ask about Tsévi and his business, all I found was a listing for Microfund on a micro-finance directory and a hotmail address. It seem the do not have a website.
    I’m a little disappointed that I’ve not had any personal contact throughout the process, I understand that Tsévi himself is probably unable to get on-line on a regular basis (if at all) but I’d like to think that a micro-finance institution with 43 employees would have invested something in IT infrastructure.
    Never mind, I wait with anticipation for the next Journal Update.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: