Combating Poverty With Blog Action Day ’08 – Kiva

Thousands of bloggers around the world are coming together in an online effort as part of the Blog Action Day ’08 to raise awareness about poverty and encourage readers to do something about it.

And a great way to make a meaningful impact is through a site called Kiva – where anyone can make microloans (normally around $25 and up) to entrepreneurs of their choice in developing countries. Instead of giving people donations for causes of poverty, Kiva has provided a system where regular folks in the developed countries can make microloans to budding entrepreneurs in developing countries and help them to escape poverty in a smarter and sustained way.

The loans are administered by a local Kiva field partner and used by the entrepreneur to grow his/her business. During this time, the lender (you!) receives regular updates on the progress of entrepreneur, and since these are loans at the end of the day, you get paid back (in most cases; Kiva doesn’t guarantee payback and there is some risk involved). You can then re-loan the same amount to another entrepreneur. This is such a powerful idea and brilliantly executed by Kiva, as it is transferring surplus wealth from the haves to the have-nots, in a very efficient way.

And the good news is that it seems to be catching on. $30 million has already been invested through Kiva within the past few years alone! Fortune called Kiva the “The Only Non-Profit That Matters“.

With $25, you can change someone’s life – try it out ! 🙂