Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.
- Leo Buscaglia

Monday, December 16, 2013

Making New Loans

     I'm back again . . . I know it's been awhile since I've posted a kindness story.  I've been doing acts of kindness here and there, though not with the consistency (not that I intended to) that I had last year.  I've got some thoughts germinating for a 2014 project, so stay tuned for that.  In the meantime, here's a quick story from today.
     I've written before about one of my favorite sites, Kiva.  This is a site that facilitates making micro finance loans to borrowers all over the world.  For as little as $25, any of us can participate in a loan being made to a person, usually in a 3rd world country, who might not otherwise have access to capital.  Lending organizations on the ground actually make the loan, and Kiva serves as the intermediary to aggregate contributions from and repayments to tens of thousands of lenders like you and me.  It's truly an amazing site.
     This evening I participated in two new loans.  The first was for an 18 year old man in Palestine who has opened his own small store to do maintenance on electrical machines.  He's borrowing $1900 to buy tools for his work and he'll be repaying it over 28 months.
     My second loan was for a woman in Armenia who sells perfumes to local people to help support herself and her 2 children.  She's borrowing $750 to buy more stock to resell.  She'll be repaying the loan over 26 months.  
     I've now participated in 15 different loans.  Eight of those have been fully repaid and all the others are paying back on schedule.  In fact, the default rate on these loans is something far less than 1%!  How amazing is it that any of us can easily participate in helping people all across the world?!
     By the way, a great holiday gift to consider is to give someone a Kiva card.  Kiva will send them a notice of your gift and then the recipient goes on line and chooses a loan they want to help fund, using the money you contributed.  This gets others involved in making loans and making a true difference.  I did this for both my children last year.  Check it out.


  1. Loving your pictures and the simple and beautiful way you have put your story across - you're an inspiration and I am following your journey - awesome work!