The purpose of my blog was to record my actions on what I did that was positive and made things better in the world. Many of my posts are about my donations to Kiva.org, because I think they are really going to change the world. I blog about it a lot, because kiva loans are easy to do. Its not a charity where your money gets donated and you're not really sure where it goes.
With Kiva, you get updates on where your money is. You even get it returned to you. The concept that you can significantly change people's lives by just lending them money is so powerful that it will resonate with a lot of people.
And that's what is happening. I have been with Kiva since December 2006, and there is still more lenders than loans. The people who run Kiva were surprised that the business model they envisioned didn't happen because they got so many lenders. I believe that people are fundamentally good. People are skeptical about giving away money, but not so much about lending it. And $25 isn't a large sum to many people in the developing world. For $25 they can feel good. good returns.
I set the spark for Kivafriends.org, because I knew there must be other people like me wanting to share the Kiva experience and talk amongst ourselves. I suggested it on the yahoo group, Joe ran away with the idea and set up the board, and its got thousands of members and has done incredibly productive things, including other charities, helping kiva and kiva fellows, putting out yearly calendars, and much more. I meet with kiva friends on the boards and in chat and in second life and on facebook, and have done lots of good work with them.
I really like the fact that there is all this transfer of monies from the developed world to the undeveloped world without big banks getting a cut. It still feels so grassroots.
I'm a narcissistic philanthropist. I like to lend to Julia's.
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