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Old October 27th, 2008, 06:12 PM
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Kiva

I read about this site in the paper today, and it looks pretty cool. The site sponsors many people from places like Africa, helping them get on their feet and start up their own businesses, store, etc. by getting people from all over the world to donate small amounts of money directly to the people.

Basically how it works is that you load your account on the site with money from your Paypal account, then you choose who you want to lend the money to. The site has a large list of people they sponsor, and since you choose who you help sponsor, you are not just giving your money to some faceless orginization, but to people. Then, once the person you help sponsored gets things running and starts paying back his/her loan, the money you lent gets returned to your account and then you can take the money out or choose another person to lend to.

One thing to note is that there isn't actually anything that says that the person you lend money to has to pay their loan back, but the site claims, I think, roughly a 98% repayment rate, and you can choose to lend as little as $25 at a time, so I'd say it's a fairly safe investment.

At the least I think it's worth a look. The site is http://www.kiva.org/


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Old October 27th, 2008, 06:21 PM
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Re: Kiva

I think Kiva's pretty awesome. I've been "investing" money there for over a year and I think pretty much all of my initial investment has been paid back (and been given out again).

There are a number of other great microfinance organizations out there (the other main one that I support is Opportunity International but there are many others) so I'd encourage everyone to check out others in the future... but Kiva's the best bet for getting your feet wet, I think.

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Old October 27th, 2008, 06:55 PM
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Re: Kiva

Kiva is awesome. I've been involved for about a year and have sponsored businesses on three continents. It's great because you get a lot of info on the businesses and partners, so you can make an informed decision on where you want to send your money. I find it personally gratifying to be able to read the stories of those in whose businesses I'm investing and make a connection, however small, in areas where there's so much need.
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Old October 27th, 2008, 07:22 PM
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Re: Kiva

that sounds like a great idea. i would love to contribute once i get the extra money. i would love to help some people out.
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