Monday, December 01, 2014

Dinner for one

I bought a meal today for a street person who was sitting outside Whole Foods. I got him something hot - a chicken bowl with veggies. And a drink.  Made his world a bit better today.

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Christmas presents from local artisans

My co-op (that just opened this year) had a crafts fair with local artisans. I decided to do all my christmas shopping there. I usually try to do it all in one place, supporting one thing. I've adopted Gorillas and given Kiva gift certificates and shopped at 10,000 villages.

This year everyone is getting items from co-op members.  I had a necklace for my mom elongated and the artisan stopped by my house to deliver. How's that for personal service!

Saturday, November 29, 2014

11 Kiva loans

I have lots of kiva credit so made 11 kiva loans to lenders I haven't lent to, to finish those stats.


Thursday, November 27, 2014

Made food for Thanksgiving for homeless/needy folk

I helped make food today at a local restaurant to feed the homeless for Thanksgiving. Got to work in the kitchen.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Tree people - trees in Los Angeles

I made my yearly donation to Tree people.  They plant trees in the Los Angeles area. I've planted trees with them. It's a lot of fun, better then when I was trying to do it as a living.

After we plant each tree we hold hands around and say a prayer chant and name it. And go back and water it to help it survive.  Very different than the commercial enterprises I was part of where we planted many poorly and hoped a few survived.


Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Planned Parenthood.

Made my yearly donation to Planned parenthood. Everyone deserves access to birth control.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Oxfam

Made a donation to Oxfam America


"Oxfam America is a global organization working to right the wrongs of poverty, hunger, and injustice. As one of 17 members of the international Oxfam confederation, we work with people in more than 90 countries to create lasting solutions. Oxfam saves lives, develops long-term solutions to poverty, and campaigns for social change."

Friday, November 07, 2014

Humane Society & SPCA

Made a donation to the Pasadena Humane Society and SPCA.  I am so glad they are there to take care of stray animals.
  I donate to this shelter at least once a year.

Thursday, October 02, 2014

Mexican CHEESE Farmer from Kiva

Made a Kiva loan

Elias is a small Mexican farmer who produces and sells cheese for a living. He decided to purchase a 120-cubic-meter Sistema Biobolsa biodigester in order to reduce the high energy costs, which were threatening the existence of the business itself. 
By purchasing the biodigester, he will not have to externally buy the expensive propane needed for cooling and other purposes anymore. He will be able to fully integrate biogas production in the natural cycle of his business. By using the Sistema Biobolsa waste-to-energy solution, Elias will take full advantage of the large quantities of manure his animals produce every day. The biodigester is a strategic acquisition for Elias and will allow his cheese producing activity to flourish. 
This loan represents 22% of the total cost of the Sistema Biobolsa biodigester.

Wednesday, October 01, 2014

Kiva to Iraq

Made a Kiva loan to Iraq.

Shaima, a 38 year old mother of four, is an attorney and civil-society activist with twelve years of professional experience. She has participated in many activities with local NGOs and international agencies, and works in a clinic that provides legal aid for women survivors of domestic violence.

Shaima identified an entrepreneurial opportunity when she noticed a lack of sufficient hotel options to accommodate the increase of tourists in her Iraqi hometown. Although the tourism market in Shaima’s conservative community is generally run by men, she bravely penetrated this male-dominated business world and opened a small motel in June 2013. Her self-confidence and her family’s support were key elements in making this decision. Shaima’s business has improved her family’s economic situation and, in turn, their quality of life. Moreover, her business has created job opportunities for five community members. Shaima expects this number to increase as her business flourishes.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Wikipedia

I made a donation to Wikipedia today. My father asks me to, he uses it all the time. And he doesn't have a US credit card and asks me to donate for him.
 I am glad to donate to Wikipedia because I am glad they exist.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Security Deposit

I helped Tracey with some funds she needs for a security deposit.  She's not asking for much but it will allow her to move into a place and she's been homeless for over a year.


http://www.benevolent.net/need.html?needid=892

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Kiva Zip loan for CHOCOLATE

Another worthwhile story.
Love helping local people.

Personal Story
I grew up in the mean and beautiful streets of Los Angeles, California with my six other siblings, and boy it was an adventure! Being the eldest girl came with a lot of unwanted responsibility but unbeknownst to me this shaped who I am today. I take charge, risk and responsibility to do what I love.
I've been cooking, baking and creating sweet goods and chocolate confections for over thirty years. It's such second nature, I feel I can do it with my eyes closed. I've raised three wonderful children with my husband of 26 years, who passed away in 2006 due to complications with congestive heart failure. My husband was a great provider but needed to be cared for as well. Without questions, I put everything on hold to do so. Now it is my time to manifest my dreams.
My dream is to own and operate my own chocolate confection company. That would also include a thriving internet web site, a charming store front and the ability to successfully share my vision worldwide. I was able to display my talents recently at a friend's wedding. I took care of all her center pieces and thank you gifts. Her guest loved everything so much they started calling me to provide chocolate confections for other events. That's when I figured out I was sitting on an excellent business idea!
Business Description
My business provides delicious chocolate confections and gifts for any and all occasions. I saw there was a need for a business like mine when I would try to find unique and beautiful gifts, and could not find anything out of the ordinary. I would make chocolate and combined it with a customized gift or theme. Everybody who saw my gifts loved the idea so much they became my loyal customers.
In December, 2013, J Kirs Chocolates was re-launched. My biggest challenge is getting the exposure I need for this company to be highly successful. Thanks to word of mouth by my friends and family, I have a strong customer base. Hopefully, with a little help I can continue to knock out some goals. My goal is to operate on a much larger scale with staff, equipment, and a store front or commercial kitchen for my chocolate creations.
What is the purpose of this loan?
A loan from the Kiva Zip program would help to expedite the growth of J Kris Chocolates to the next level. Funding will help with payroll, kitchen rental expenses, marketing, and equipment, including chocolate melters, a popcorn popper, stackable racks, a labeling system for product ingredients, and bar coding system.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Helping make a dream

Local Kiva Zip loan. Lots more verbiage than the regular kiva loans. Brings out his personality. I'm going to try to find his store sometime.

I was born in Puebla, Mexico. My father was an electrician and my mother a stay at home mom. I had a humble upbringing; my father worked hard for us to have the essentials we needed and also provided the means to start my education. I was a good student and my parents pushed me to study. I was one of the highest in my class and with honors.
After high school, an opportunity presented itself to go work with my cousin in New York. He always to send me pictures of all the wonderful places he would visit and I had to come to see them for myself. I also knew coming to live and work in the United States there was opportunities that were not available in my home country.
I worked hard getting employment in grocery stores and minimarts where I quickly became a valued employee. I realized that here in the United States, saving my money, and working hard I could also own my own business. I eventually bought the minimart where I was an employee. I quickly realized that I needed to become an active participant in the health of my customers and my community, and began preparing a business plan with the help of the Harbor BusinessSource to offer healthy alternatives to my customers in the store. With the implementation of this new plan, I can provide education and healthier foods to my Hispanic community who have a high rate of obesity, high blood pressure, and diabetes.
Business Description
I was an employee of La Milagrosa market in Wilmington, CA for 4 years. It is a small minimart that sells Latino food products, snacks, beverages, fresh meat, and also produce. When the owner decided to sell, I saw my opportunity and jumped on it.
My dream was always to become a business owner in the United States, so I acquired it with my hard earned savings. I've gotten to know and care for my customers, who are predominantly Hispanic, and hope to continue providing excellent service while providing fresh, organic, and healthy alternatives that will make an impact in the health of my community.
We currently serve 100 customers a day, predominantly middle- and high-school students in the afternoons and the general community in the evenings. We strive to provide convenience and great prices, which makes a difference to our customers who often work full-time but want to avoid fast food for their families.
What is the purpose of this loan?
With this loan of $3,000, I will expand my inventory to include more (and healthier) choices. After investing all my savings toward the purchase of the store, I haven't been able to expand my product range. This loan will impact my business instantly by attracting more customers, who want and need a wider range of choices in their food and other convenience items.
My neighborhood has often been called a ‘food desert’ because there are few green, fresh, healthy options. I will first add more shelves where I can display my new inventory. I will then purchase an array of fresh and nutritious products such as wheat tortillas, low sodium canned goods, and organic produce just to name a few where in this community it is not so easy to access. This will allow me to introduce my community to products that are delicious and weight conscious, helping educate them on the importance of choosing healthier substitutes. I can then continue living my dream of being a productive business owner.
When my business grows the whole community also partakes in my success. I will hire more employees, creating economic opportunity in this small, tight-knit community.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Helping out close to home with Kiva's new Kiva zip program.

This program is for loans in developed countries - o% loans for people doing good things.

I like to support the local economy, I do most of my food shopping at the farmer's market (which is easier to do in Southern California, one can live off a fantastic diet of things grown within 100 miles).

This loan is for someone who lives very close to me.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Alley cat allies

I am proud to support Alley Cat Allies, a great group trying to make life better for our feral cats.

Their programs are working. Cats lives are improving.

 Love kitties. Wish they could all be healthy and happy.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Southern Poverty Law Center

With all the things going on in Fergusson right now, I'm making a contribution to the Southern Poverty Law Center to help with civil rights. And equality. And all the other great things they do.

Been a proud supporter for years.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Green America

Made my yearly contribution to Green America to help them organize and promote greening. I have used their catalog many times in the past - Natural Green pages..

The mission of Green America is to harness economic power—the strength of consumers, investors, businesses, and the marketplace—to create a socially just and environmentally sustainable society.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Kiva loan to a new country - Myanmar

Kiva loan.
Located in Central Myanmar’s Yaysagyo township, this community currently has 44 village customers, including 6 CBO (Community Based Organization) committee members who help to lead the loan program in the area. This village is located in Myanmar's dry zone, where insufficient rainfall is very common. Most villagers are Buddhist and struggle to find access to affordable credit, as the state-owned agricultural bank is not active in the area.

Most people in the village rely on traditional farming and cultivate various crops such as pigeon peas, sesame, chickpeas, cotton and groundnuts. The new loan would enable the community to pay for farming inputs such as seeds, fertilizers and compost, and lease equipment, such as tractors and bulls, for the planting and harvesting seasons.

Pictured above are the committee members from the Min Kan Village CBO: U San, U Win, U Tin, Daw Aye, Daw Myint and Daw Kyi. Included in the photo (farthest to the right) is 50-year-old U San, who has eight family members. He works not only as a farmer, but also as a construction worker in nearby villages. He used his past loan to invest in compost and fertilizer. He will invest his new loan in sesame and cotton seeds for the coming cropping season.

Additional Information

More information about this loan

This loan will be facilitated through Proximity Designs network of Community Based Organizations (CBOs) in order to support rural farmers in Myanmar’s Delta and Dry Zone regions.  Proximity worked closely with CBOs to provide relief services after Cyclone Nargis and to support village infrastructure projects.

CBOs also play a key role in providing access to microcredit.  In this model, CBO committee members support Proximity loan officers throughout the entire loan cycle. They assist in selecting village borrowers and also act as formal representatives during loan disbursement, collection of repayments and other communications. CBO committee members appear in Kiva profiles – often alongside village borrowers – as representatives of the community.

Since families rely heavily on income from farming to support their livelihoods, these loans are structured with a single bullet repayment at the end of the loan term. The timing aligns with expected harvest season when borrowers will be able to repay. All community members who receive financing through the CBO model must repay their portion of the loan before a village will be eligible to receive new funding. 

About Proximity Designs:

Proximity Designs is a non-profit social enterprise that offers loan products to help small, low income farmers increase their productivity and income. There are around 12 million farmers in Myanmar who make up more than a third of the labor force. The majority of these farmers have virtually no access to formal credit institutions.

In the absence of other financing opportunities, most small farmers in Myanmar are unable to afford the equipment, material, and labor necessary to grow their crops without the help of Proximity Designs. Kiva funding will be used to help Proximity Designs expand its agricultural microfinance operation and reach more low income, rural farmers.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Kiva in India

Kiva loan to India.  Rinalata is a married woman living with her husband and three children in a rental at Bhubaneswar town, Odisha, India. The member standing first on the left with a raised hand is Rinalata. She, along with her husband, is doing a grocery business in their locality and maintains their livelihood. Their monthly income is near about Rs. 13,000 per month, which was not sufficient to meet their monthly household expenses. 

One of her sons, named Anip, is continuing his ITI (Mechanic Trade) in Gop College, Puri. He is a good student and wants to do a diploma in Mechanics, but due to lack of money he is not in a position to continue his study. For continuation of his study, Rinalata wants a loan of Rs. 30,000. Your help will enable Anip to complete his diploma in Mechanical Trade and get a technical job at a handsome salary. 

The other five members of her group are Pramila, Meena, Sanjukta, Santilata and Jayanti.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Kiva

Salome is 40 years old and married with seven children. She earns her income through the sale of crops and also earns small wages as a local community worker. She grows maize, coffee, beans, Irish potatoes and bananas. She also has cows, goats and chickens.

Salome looks forward to becoming a Community Knowledge Worker (CKW) supervisor. As a CKW supervisor, Salome will use the materials in her business-in-a-box (which include a smartphone and a solar-charging device) to support the other CKWs and disseminate vital agricultural information to the members of her village. In doing so, Salome will help them to improve their crop yields and increase their incomes. Salome will also personally offer CKW services to farmers. 

With the additional money that she will earn as a CKW, Salome will expand her farm and pay the school fees for her children. Her biggest dream in life is to become a model farmer supporting other small-holder farmers in her community.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Kiva loan to Rwanda

Laetty is one of a few dynamic women in Rwanda's male-dominated construction industry. Laetty began working in the construction industry three years ago when she first purchased her quarry. Since then, she has been supplying big and small construction companies with stones for building houses and roads. Rwanda's construction industry is booming, and Laetty has identified a new opportunity to grow her business.

Buy purchasing a stone crushing machine, Laetty will now be able to provide her clients with gravel and sand. These new products will enable her to add value to her existing business by processing her raw materials, while meeting the expanding needs of her customers.

Laetty has been an active member of African Entrepreneur Collective. She has attended several of our business training classes, meets with an AEC staff member once per week to discuss business strategies and opportunities, and has partnered with other AEC entrepreneurs to refer clients and other supports.

With a current base of 10 employees, Laetty anticipates adding three new permanent staff members to run this machine, as well as 20-30 part-time workers.

Friday, August 08, 2014

Thursday, August 07, 2014

Doctors Without Borders

Filled out a survey today for Doctors without Borders to help them understand their supporters. I included a donation in the response. I think Doctors without Borders is doing a fantastic job responding to natural disasters and helping people. I support them over the Red Cross because more of their funding goes directly to help and not administrative costs.


Wednesday, August 06, 2014

SPCA

Made a donation to the local SPCA to help with their summer funding drive.   Summer is hard on homeless animals, they get overheated and suffer from dehydration. Also more kittens and puppies around.

Love animals. Want them all to live good lives.

This donation was a general one, but I am contributing a lot to save cats.

Tuesday, August 05, 2014

Planned Parenthood

Made my yearly donation to Planned Parenthood.  I think they are an amazing organization that really helps women with health and birth control issues.  When I lived in New Hampshire my doctor was located in a Planned Parenthood clinic and I could see all the good they did.

Monday, August 04, 2014

Made a donation and joined the founding partners for the National Medal of Honor Museum.  

This museum will serve as a permanent home for the stories of the heros who received a National Medal of Honor.

Sunday, August 03, 2014

Amazon smile

I set up Amazon smile today so that a percentage of what I purchase through amazon will go to a non-profit I select. I chose Team Rubicon; their facebook post turned me onto amazon smile.

I do tend to buy a lot of things from Amazon. I buy a lot of things online because I don't really like shopping and don't really need many things and when I do need something I want something particular.

I installed the extensions to my browser so I don't have to do anything to make my Amazon purchases donate.

Saturday, August 02, 2014

Team Rubicon

Made a donation to day to support Team Rubicon's efforts in helping people in Washington state who were affected by the fires.
 

Team Rubicon empowers veterans with a new mission and community through disaster response and humanitarian crises.

This wonderful non-profit lets vets use their skills in helping Americans in the USA.

WIN/WIN.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Kiva loan

Helped out with a kiva loan today as recommended by one of my kiva groups. trying to get her funded.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

The Huntington

Made a donation to the Huntington today. It's a beautiful place. And the world needs more beautiful places.

Thursday, July 03, 2014

People assisting the homeless PATH

I make a monthly automatic contribution to PATH. 
They are truly helping put people in homes.  And homelessness is a big issue.  I see homeless people almost every time I leave my house. If I stop for fast food (which is rare, but I do the occasional SUBWAY), I will buy food for anyone around. And eat with them if I can.   

I was at a meeting once where I sat beside a noble prize winner during the event dinner. The night before I had had dinner with a homeless person sitting on the street curb. 

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Kiva Credit

Had a lot of Kiva credit, I was travelling out of the country again.
Today I made 10 loans to people from microlenders I haven't lent to before.

I am going to go into Second Life and fly around in my Kiva plane and reminisce about past fun times.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Smiles

Did one of those quizzes to determine my life's motto and got:

"Be the reason someone smiles today" - Don't forget to spread some of your happiness around. You are lucky, you have a lot of great things going on in your life to be thankful for, and a lot of light within you that you can share with others. Who knows, one day they just might return the favor.

I make people smile all the time. I say hi and do small talk as often as possible, with my neighbours, the people I see on my walks, shopkeepers, homeless, etc.  I get in elevators and say things and make people laugh most of the time. It's good to laugh

Tuesday, June 03, 2014

Busy busy

I've been so busy.
My Kiva repayments piled up so I made 17 loans today. I chose them based on activities and microfinancers I haven't lent to yet.

Hopefully my life will settle down again and I'll blog more.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Help stamp out hunger

Left some food in my mailbox today to help stamp out hunger. It's a yearly food drive done by the US post office. Mailpersons collect food directly from mailboxes.

Wednesday, May 07, 2014

Kiva loan to Belize

Made a loan today to Andrea from Belize.


Andrea is a new farmer who lives in the beautiful village of Indian Creek, in the Toledo district of southern Belize. She was inspired by other farmers who have benefited from the blossoming cacao industry in the area, and is excited to join the farming world. 

As a housewife with three children, Andrea is currently unemployed, and is eager to begin farming to become more self-sustaining. She has requested this loan to purchase cacao trees.

Andrea would like to send her kids to school using the revenue she generates from planting and selling cacao.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Homeless Vets in Los Angeles - PATH

I make monthly automatic donations to PATH (People Assisting the Homeless). Today I made an additional donation to help homeless vets for a matching donation.

The link to donate is here.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Kiva loan to Ala-Buka village, Kyrgyzstan



Masturazhan is 57 and married with children. She has a high school education and works in animal husbandry as the primary source of income for her family, a business she started more than 30 years ago with the purchase of livestock for 2,000 KGS. Thanks to her hard work, she now has two milking cows, one horse and 25 sheep, as well as everything she needs to care for the animals. She also has a small parcel of land where she harvests corn, potatoes and carrots every year, both for her own use and for sale. Her total monthly income is 15,000 KGS. With the goal of further developing her business, Masturazhan has turned to Bai Tushum Bank for a loan to purchase sheep to increase the amount of livestock she has. She also plans to save toward renovating her home.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Kiva loan to Yen's group

Made a Kiva loan to Vietnam.

Yen is 42 years old and lives with her children and her husband. For the past eight years, Yen has been running a food stall from the front of her house to earn an income to support her family. 

Yen is the group leader of an eight-member loan group. The group members live in Ho Chi Minh City. In the picture, Yen is fifth from the left and wearing a red jacket. Each of the other group members are requesting loans to fund income-generating activities. 

Yen is requesting a loan to purchase a better quality and greater variety of products, such as food and beverages, to restock her stall. She hopes this will enable her to better meet the needs of her customers and attract additional ones. She also hopes that through her loan, she will be able to increase her income and save money for any future difficulties facing her family.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Kiva loans to help the world

Another Kiva loan to a Massah.
Hello from Kandeh town, a community near the small and busy southern city of Bo. This is Massah, a local 38-year-old businesswoman who is married to a teacher. They have three children aged between 10 and 25. 

Massah was a housewife but then started her business so that she could support her husband in paying for her children’s school fees. Massah sells dried and smoked fish to her customers from a table near a busy market place. The fish is smoked on a grate whilst small pieces of wood burn underneath. Certain fish smoke better than others and Massah tries to run her business in tune with local demand and whatever fish is available from the ports. Massah works hard throughout the week. She says that everything is going well with her business. She is steadily getting more sales and meeting new customers. 

Massah would like to use this loan to purchase more fish to sell to her customers. She would like to say a big thank you to BRAC Sierra Leone and to the Kiva community for their financial support. The access to capital for her business helps Massah provide a comfortable life for her family.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Kiva kiva kiva

Kiva loan to Massah

Massah is a hard-working local business woman from Kandeh, a community near the small and busy southern city of Bo.

Massah is a widow and has 7 children between the ages of 10 and 26. She also supports 2 other members of her extended family. 

Massah was a full time mother and housewife before she started her business but did so to ensure that her children could go to school and have a good life. She sells “cookery” beside a busy road. “Cookery” is a modest term for the wealth of spicy stews that are cooked by local people and served with rice. The basic ingredients of ‘cookery’ are palm oil (which is used as the base for the stews), rice, seasoning and chicken or fish. Massah also serves grilled chicken to her customers.

Massah works 6 days a week and has built her business so that she now has two assistants. Massah says that her business is going ‘OK’ and that she gets new customers on most days. She is proud that, as a result of her hard work, five of her children attend school.

Massah would like this loan so that she can buy more ingredients to make her dishes. In particular, she would like to buy rice, palm oil and bulk quantities of chicken. Massah is a BRAC Sierra Leone success story, as she previously borrowed and repaid 5 loans. 

Massah would like to thank BRAC Sierra Leone and the Kiva community for their support of her business.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Kiva loan to Fatima

Made a Kiva loan to Fatima
Greetings from Kandeh town, a community near the small and busy southern city of Bo. 

This is Fatmata. Fatmata is 30 years old and is married to a local worker. They have two children aged 6 and 10. Both of the children are going to school. 
Fatmata was a housewife before she began her business selling cookery to passers-by. “Cookery” is a modest term for the wealth of spicy stews that are cooked by local people and served with rice. The building blocks of such stews are palm oil, cassava leaf, rice, seasoning and chicken or fish. Fatmata also sells cold drinks to her customers. 
Fatmata works throughout the week to serve her customers and would love to see her business grow. One of the challenges she faces is when sales slow down. Fatmata is well-known to BRAC Sierra Leone because she dutifully repaid two previous loans for her business. 
Fatmata would like to use this loan to buy more cold drinks and ingredients in bulk for her cookery business. She thanks BRAC Sierra Leone and Kiva for their support in her endeavors to make life more comfortable for her family.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Kiva loan to Baby

Made a kiva loan to Baby.

Greetings from Kandeh town, a community near the small and busy southern city of Bo. 
This is Baby a 42-year-old businesswoman and mother. Baby got her name because she was the youngest in her family. Baby now has five children of her own aged between 6 and 21. 
Baby has always been involved in trade and did not finish her schooling. Because of this, it was a natural progression for her to set up a small business independent from her parents when she grew up. Baby has a table at a busy marketplace from which she sells onions, palm oil, rice, sugar, gari, fish, and other ingredients bought by her customers to make local spicy stews such as green, cassava leaf, groundnut soup, and pepper soup. 
Baby works hard for six days each week and has built her business so she now sometimes hires two extra people to help her. She says her business is running smoothly, and she likes when she sells to new customers for the first time. 
Baby would like to use this loan to buy more cooking supplies to sell to her customers.
Baby is very well regarded by BRAC Sierra Leone, having previously repaid five loans for her business. She thanks BRAC Sierra Leone and Kiva sincerely for their financial support which has really helped her make family life more comfortable.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Smiling

I smiled and said hi to a lot of people in the grocery store today.  The funny thing about people is that if you say hi and greet them first they almost always great you back and exchange pleasantries.  I live in a world where strangers always talk to each other because I make sure it happens, if they don't say hi first I do. I probably often do, I don't keep score.

I talk to people in public all the time. It does good. It reminds people that we are all in community, we are not just individuals going about our days business.

Connecting is good.

Monday, April 07, 2014

kiva loans

Made a whole lot of kiva loans today, to use up some of my kiva credit. It got over $400 'cause I have been travelling and busy. Went to Italy, it was a lot of fun.

Tuesday, April 01, 2014

Kiva loan to Suriname

Made a kiva loan today to a new country,

Suriname

.

Mahinder is 30 years old and lives with his wife and two school-aged children. Since he turned 17, after leaving school, he has been working in agriculture. He also works as a field worker at a banana company. With this income he provides for his family. Mahinder is planting only on rented plots and wants to have his own plots. With his business skills, he can save for his own plots. He does business with Seva MFI, because he had no capital to do business with other financial institutions. Mahinder asks Seva MFI for a loan of SRD 10,000 to buy fertilizer and pesticides for his rice cultivation.

Additional Information

More information about this loan


This loan is part of Seva's effort to reach marginalized rice farmers who are excluded from Suriname's traditional banking system. This type of loan is designed to help agricultural entrepreneurs become self sustainable. This is especially important in Suriname, where microfinance is limited. These loans provide farmers with the opportunity to thrive in a country where rural and agricultural businesses are considered to be too risky for commercial loans.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Rosarie from the Vatican

I made a cashier at a local food's store day today.  I gave her a rosary I got from the vatican last week. I had mentioned to her that I was going to Italy, and she jokingly asked me for one.  She was quite shocked I brought one back to her. I got two hugs. And I'm sure she will pass on kindness and it will grow exponentially.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Food for vets

Brought some snacks to the volunteer office at the VA hospital today. 70 meals. Something to put in their stomach and let them know someone cares.

That's what it's all about. Knowing someone cares.  I'm really fortunate that way, I have a lot of people who care about me. I am very close to my family, and have a lot of friends who have demonstrated how much they care. I feel secure in my love, which probably helps me give so much away.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Bicycle

Veton wants to thank all of the lenders for the previous loan, which he used to purchase bicycles to sell. The loan has helped him to grow his business and be able to generate more income for his family. Now he is asking again for a loan for the same business and same purpose. He was very satisfied and happy to have received the first loan and the results that he saw, so he is eager to be able to borrow again. Veton hopes to expand his business even further in the future and wants to thank all of the lenders.

Tuesday, March 04, 2014

Dentistry in Bolivia

Made a Kiva loan to Agar in Bolivia so she can finish her dental work and be able to eat again.

Saturday, March 01, 2014

Memorial for a friend

Made a donation today to a neighbourhood association in memorial for a friend.
He died at a young age (50) suddenly. And I will always miss him.

Kiva loan

I made a loan today to Hussein in Jordon.

Hussein was born in 1959. He is a retired, married man and a father of nine living in a sector in Jordan called Southern Ghour. Hussein has been working in filtering and filling water gallons at his workshop for four years. His project has been profitable. Now, he needs to do some repairs to his store in order to attract more customers and to add new tools, but he doesn't have enough money to do so. For this reason, he has applied for this loan.

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Alley Cat Allies

Made a donation today to Alley Cat Allies, a non-profit I have been supporting for years.

Alley Cat Allies is the only national advocacy organization dedicated to the protection and humane treatment of cats. An engine for social change, Alley Cat Allies was the first organization to introduce and advocate for humane methods of feral cat care, particularly Trap-Neuter-Return, in the American animal protection community. By establishing and promoting standards of care, our organization has brought humane treatment of cats into the national spotlight, now embraced by major cities and animal protection organizations coast to coast. In 20 short years, we’ve changed America to better understand and respect the lives of cats.
Today, more than 500,000 supporters look to Alley Cat Allies for leadership in the movement to protect cats’ lives. We promote progressive policies for cats in communities all over America and we work towards a world that values the lives of all animals. Our two decades of experience in grassroots organizing, hands-on activism, and education has empowered policymakers, veterinarians, nonprofit and volunteer groups, activists, and caregivers nationwide with the tools and knowledge to practice, teach, and advocate for humane care for cats in their own communities. From a headquarters in Bethesda, Maryland, Alley Cat Allies’ staff of more than 40 people provides the national voice for cats and the millions of Americans who value cats’ lives.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

New Billard table in Peru.

Made a kiva loan today in 'games' activity. It was to Abigail in Peru to buy a new billards table.

Abigail is 20. She lives in the family home with her husband and two-year-old son. Her little boy is her reason for being and she does everything she can so that he will never suffer want. She currently works in a restaurant in the mornings. She has another income in the afternoons, renting billiards tables in her home.

She will use this loan to purchase another billiards table, which will generate her a greater income. Her dream is to have her own space for a restaurant and billiards tables.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Tourism on Kiva

Made a loan today in the 'Tourism' activity on Kiva.

Nver lives in Dilijan city. He is the only one who makes money in the household. He is married and he has two children. For many years Nver earned his family's living by doing a worker’s job. 

The city where Nver lives is very nice, famous, and a perfect rest zone for tourists and Armenian people as well. Dilijan considers it to have the purest salubrious nature and the most bracing air in the whole region, since here forests are virginal and anyone who comes here just admires it and falls in love with this place. That is why this city has a lot of comfortable and high quality rest houses. 

At one of these sanatoriums Nver works now. He works here as a sanitary engineer, but as he says work in rest houses is seasonal and in autumn and winter, tourists are very few, so his family income becomes low as well. Nver owns a nice cute farm, where he breeds two cows and a calf, and he manages to sell a lot of milk right from his house. 

Now Nver has a good, profitable idea and he needs some help to realize it; he has a big garage near his house and on the bottom of it he wants to build a small guestroom which he plans to rent to tourists during summer. He asks for a loan in an amount of 1,000,000 Armenian drams in order to manage to start building his small guestroom.

Friday, February 21, 2014

Kiva in the USA

Made a Kiva loan in the USA today, to George.

George was inspired to start S.I.R. George to help families communicate more efficiently with and provide support for children with special needs. Having a daughter with special needs, he not only had the knowledge and experience to help younger parents, but also the empathy and patience for new parents of special needs children. 


George created his business in 2009 and is striving to reach more families in need. While George currently has one volunteer administrative assistant, he hopes to optimize his company’s outreach by having a fully functional website and increased advertising, repairing special communication equipment and eventually supporting a staff of clinicians with the goal of facilitating the creation of a support community of families with special needs.

George hopes to optimize and increase outreach to families with special needs and create personalized care for each child to foster increased conversation between parents and special needs children.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Thursday, February 06, 2014

Made a Kiva loan to a Kiva lender in the USA.

Made a kiva loan today to someone in the USA who is also a kiva lender.  Wheel comes full circle!  Wish I lived close enough to use their smog testing business.


A Kiva lender himself, Jesus recognizes the difference that microlending has made in the lives of others. Now, it is Jesus’ turn to reach out to the community in order to transform his passion for fixing cars into a viable business.

After emigrating from Mexico, Jesus (pictured left) attended Southwestern College’s automotive program with his close friend David (pictured right). After graduation, they elected to open D&V Smog Repair by pooling their funds together. Starting with very little money, they have spent the past three years at their Chula Vista location gradually increasing the amount of services they offer. 

“Once we were out of school, we were idealists, but it turns out you really have to start small when starting a business,” Jesus explains.

The necessary equipment they need to keep their shop up-to-date and running is expensive. Jesus and David recently realized that they needed a new smog test machine to meet the state’s current test requirement. As avid advocates of microfinance themselves, they sought out local microfinance organizations and took out a $10,000 Kiva loan to fund their purchase.

Kiva gave them the opportunity to continue to grow their business, while they remain in full control of how their business is run.

“We love being independent and not working for someone else. There are always risks, but it is better this way,” says Jesus.

While they currently primarily perform smog testing, Jesus and David are ultimately interested in purchasing the necessary equipment required to repair brakes, lights and cooling systems. As their business continues to expand, they hope to one day purchase the building that the repair shop operates in.