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Kiva.org ~ Helping Sewing Businesses and Others in Developing Countries

Kiva.org is a website that allows individuals to lend money through microloans of as little as $25 to pre-screened entrepreneurs in the developing world, empowering them to lift themselves out of poverty.  The purpose of the microloans ranges from supplying wood and better tools to a carpenter in Cambodia to purchasing materials for a sewing collective in Peru that it otherwise couldn’t afford.

The site allows visitors to browse entrepreneurs’ profiles, choose someone to lend to, and then make a loan.  This unique program allows users to help real people in developing countries make great strides towards economic independence and improve life for themselves, their family, and their community. Individual lenders receive email journal updates and can track repayments over the course of the loan (usually 6-12 months), and are encouraged to relend to someone else in need when the loans are repaid.  The reported “impact this week” is 1620 entrepreneurs funded, 3231 new lenders joined, 1144 loans repaid and $678,125 lent.

Overall the site is informative, navigation is good, and there is plenty of content including project journals, entrepreneur profiles, press center and help center.  Bottom line – if your business can afford $25 or more to help another grow or get started, why not head over to http://www.kiva.org to see if there is anyone you’d like to help.  You can take your money back out when the loan is repaid or you can keep paying it forward.

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Author, Instructor & Pattern Designer

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