Kiva Microloans

23 Sep

For my new experience this week, I’m dipping my toe into the world of microlending.

Kiva is a non-profit organisation where you help fund loans to microfinance institutions, which in turn help entrepreneurs in developing countries. My understanding is that as the borrowers repay their loans, the microfinance institutions return the funds to Kiva, and then the lenders can re-lend it to someone else. I decided to start small and fund two loans, one for me and one for James.

James: Let me know which one you pick. I will judge their business case.

So for James I picked Gregory – a proven returner of loans. Supeyo, his first choice, was fully funded before I could get to him, but Gregory seemed similarly ambitious and reliable.

image from Kiva

Gregory Musyoki is 46 years old and married to Pauline, a business lady. Together they have two kids. His primary business is construction. He has been in the sector for the past three years. His monthly income from the business is 30,000 KES.

This is his fourth loan with KADET. His previous loans were repaid successfully. The loan will help him buy construction materials. The anticipated profits will help pay fees for his children. His dream is to own a residential building.

Elsa was my choice because I liked her plan of breeding and selling animals, and also she is the same age as me. James also liked her animal reproduction plan, and called her “Noah’s Ark”.

image from Kiva

Elsa is 28 years old, lives with her partner and has 3 children ages 9, 5 and 1 year old. She raises small animals such as pigs, sheep, chickens and guinea pigs to reproduce and sell them. She wants to use this loan to purchase pigs, sheep and chickens, specifically 2 pigs, 4 sheep and 6 chickens.

She is grateful for and appreciates the loan provided and is committed to continue making her payments on time.

I like the idea that (in addition to making extra loans) when the money gets repaid I can use re-use it to help other people – and yeah, I know it’s somewhat symbolic like buying a cow for Oxfam or sponsoring a child, but whether I get my money back does depend on whether the borrower repays the loan, so it’s not like my choices have zero impact.

Like sponsoring a child, you get a face and a story so you can better picture where your money is going, and it’s totally working on me (also their nifty pie charts that split your loans based on gender, country and industry). I’ve been camping their pages, and after my loan it only took an hour or so for them both to be fully funded. Elsa got there first, and when Gregory also made it I actually raised my fist in triumph.

Go Elsa and Gregory! You can do it!

Week 1: Made vanilla extract
Week 2: BJJ day camp
Week 3: Used Myki and went to Beatrix
Week 4: Tried new skincare
Week 5: Competed at the Pan Pacs
Week 6: Joined Kiva

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2 Responses to “Kiva Microloans”

  1. polittacking September 23, 2011 at 12:41 pm #

    if they’re late with repayments you break fingers right?

    • pamperedhousewife September 23, 2011 at 12:43 pm #

      You make mock, but I did actually avoid old people out of fear they would die before they repaid my loan. I was quite ruthless.

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