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February 20, 2008

Kiva...the best little give-from-your-heart-for-all -of-the-right-reasons website around...

Kiva...
Kiva.org
This is an amazing website...go there, loan a small amount of money to people in countries around the world who will have their lives changed by a bit of your cash...about as much as it costs for a movie and popcorn these days.

I first heard about Kiva on Oprah...the founders, Matt and his wife, Jessica were on the show with her and President Bill Clinton.

"Matt began developing Kiva with his wife Jessica in late 2004 as a side-project with while working as a computer programmer at TiVo, Inc.
In December 2005 Matt left his job to devote himself to Kiva full-time. As CEO, Matt has led Kiva's growth from a pilot project to an established online service with partnerships across the globe and millions in dollars loaned to low income entrepreneurs.
Matt is a Draper Richards Fellow and a featured blogger on the Skoll Foundation's Social Edge website. He graduated with a BS in Symbolic Systems and a Masters in Analytical Philosophy from Stanford University."

President Bill Clinton was talking about his new book, "Giving." The discussion turned to Kiva and President Clinton explained what it was about...I was hooked. This little organization has all the earmarks of a perfect charity for me:
~ All the $$$ goes to the people to whom you choose to loan money.
~ You receive all of the information needed to make your choices.
~ The $$$ to run the offices comes from a donation that you can choose to make while you are making your loan...a suggested 10% donation to Kiva is listed on the loan page and it is up to you if you send them anything at all.

I'd like to introduce you to one of my Kiva entrepreneurs...I loaned $25 to Hermelinda, who lives in Peru. She wanted $525 to start a small bakery in her own home. She applied to Kiva on January 1st, the loan was filled by all of us who signed up, again on January 1st, and she has already made payments back to us, totalling 17% of her loan amount!

"Hermelinda is a humble mother of two children, who since childhood has been very hard working, has held numerous jobs in order to get ahead, but upon seeing that the income generated did not cover her household expenses, she decided to create her own source of work. Therefore she renovated her home and installed a small artisan oven in which she makes a variety of breads to then distribute to the various little stores in her area.

The wish of this hardworking mother is to increase her production quantity and broaden her market in the city. In order to do this she needs a loan to purchase a large quantity of flour. Hermelinda promises to repay the loan in six months. This hardworking mother needs your support in order to prosper in her business." ~ Kiva website

This is a feel-good, can't-help-but-make-a-difference kind of thing...check it out! I bet you'll love it as much as I do.

"Think of giving not as a duty but as a privilege."
~ John D. Rockefeller Jr.

May 5, 2008

Women for Women Interational...Happy Mother's Day

women%20for%20women%20logo.gif

I have been helping an organization called Women for Women International.
I've been matched with an 18 year old woman in Kosova, and have started writing letters to her, letting her know that I am committed to sending her letters and gifts and cold, hard cash on a regular basis.
The cash makes a huge difference for her and her family who live with very little money and sporadic jobs, a dreadful situation left over from the fighting in the war-torn country where she was born.

Here's some very good information about this organization. Caroline Kennedy has written a feature article about the founder, Zainab Salbi. In the TIME Magazine May 1, 2008 issue, you'll find this great story. Here's the link...
http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1736706,00.html?roi=echo3-2332533512-2081367-fb7f55b01c22a5918713aa8ca2ae43c5&

"Women for Women International and its founder and CEO Zainab Salbi were featured in an article by Caroline Kennedy in the latest issue of Time Magazine. Kennedy highlights how the most urgent tasks involved in rebuilding a post-conflict society fall to women."

Zainab Salbi, Women for Women International Founder and CEO, is a remarkable woman with a remarkable story. Read this and see if you don't agree with me.

Caroline Kennedy writes, "As Mother's Day approaches, it's worth remembering that of the more than 35 million people displaced by conflict... the vast majority are women and children."
So, for this Mother's Day, I'm going to help some moms in other parts of the world...my mom passed away a year and a half ago, and Mother's Day is always a sad and grieving day for me. Maybe this will ease that somewhat for me, and more importantly, I hope it gives some other moms a better life.
https://secure.entango.com/donate/WFW_MDgifts2008?roi=echo3-2332533512-2081368-f60b674d0390951e9739b7d203580794&wfw=MDGIV08Media
Here's their website...
http://www.womenforwomen.org/
"A mother is a person who seeing there are only four pieces of pie for five people, promptly announces she never did care for pie." ~ Tenneva Jordan

This page contains an archive of all entries posted to That's my story...and I'm stickin' to it! in the Give From Your Heart...It's the Only Way! category. They are listed from oldest to newest.

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