Kiva’s loans come in all shapes, sizes and languages. Lucky for us, there’s a team of hard- working multilingual volunteers on Kiva’s Review and Translation (RTP) team who make it possible for us to get these loans onto the site!

Kiva partners operate in five languages (English, French, Spanish, Portuguese, and Russian) and we rely on an enormous network of volunteers to help review and translate loans so they can be published to our site in English while preserving the original author’s voice and tone.

Over 400 volunteers help edit and translate about 16,500 loans each month, contributing to a total 21.4 million words edited and translated per year. Not only are these volunteers language masters, but they’re pretty interesting and, not surprisingly, very global people. Our Volunteers of the Month Alison, Alex, Mike, and Santiago see translating and editing loans as a creative re-interpretation of their day-to-day work.

January - Alison

For the last five years Alison has volunteered for Kiva reviewing over 5,000 loans! She enjoys volunteering with Kiva because it gives her the ability to use her translating skills as a volunteer as well as the flexibility to travel with her husband around the world to places such as Laos, Australia, Argentina, and many other places.

February - Alex

As a student Alex studied microfinance where he learned about Kiva volunteering opportunities. Already a long time lender, Alex took the next step to volunteer as a translator working at his own pace as he traveled around the Americas. In the last two years, Alex has been dedicated to translating over 500 loans as well as being an active member on the volunteer forum, always mindful of Kiva policies in order to help others learn.

March - Mike

Mike was hooked on Kiva after a friend gave him a gift card to make a loan. From there his interest spiked, and wanting to do more, Mike joined RTP as an editor. He volunteers to make connections with real people throughout the world who are working hard to improve their lives. Many who are striving to create a brighter future for their children. In his spare time Mike writes songs inspired by “Weird Al” Yankovic. Here’s one dedicated to Kiva:

Kiva the Greatest (to the tune of Viva Las Vegas)
People ‘round the world gonna get their loans,
Gonna get their loans and thrive.
Got a whole lot of money that's ready to lend,
To make a difference in people’s lives.
There’s a thousand-plus loans that are waitin' in the queue,
Just need us editors to review,
And we know that the money will be wisely used.
Kiva’s the greatest! Kiva’s the greatest!

April - Santiago

Earning his Ph.D in Sweden, Santiago uses the power of the internet to translate loans for Kiva. He finds time between lunch and his studies to volunteer, helping entrepreneurs in his home town in Colombia over 6,000 miles away. For over two years, Santiago has been part the Kiva family, where “so many people, thanks to technology, can come together to loan borrow, and participate in an international online community of giving”.

As you can see, RTP volunteers include an eclectic group of travelers who are passionate about global development and poverty alleviation. They play a critical role in posting loans to Kiva’s website and furthering Kiva’s mission, and we’re incredibly grateful for their hard work. If you’re interested in volunteering with our RTP team you can learn more about the program here. Applications are open for Team Leaders too! Meet over 400 volunteers from around the world, gain leadership experience, and take advantage of an outstanding volunteer opportunity! Learn more about Team Leaders here.

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