I've begun questioning if Kiva and similar funds/schemes are on balance a force of good.
We can all agree that between the average Kiva benefactor and the average beneficiary something worthwhile happens and I understand the response that Kiva is a community fostering charity... but I think someone has to make the point that this facebook of charity is not really tackling core issues of government,democracy and the rule of law in any consistent way.
This is why our money are better spent with established and experienced organisations like UNESCO and the Red Cross (make ur own list) - who have been in this minefield for decades.
However – this is slow and to be honest abstract - no results this side of christmas – which is why I call charity depressing, and depressing does not sell – so you have to jazz it up a bit with some nice prospects and stories with happy endings.
This has even reflected into some of the established charities who are no longer just helping children - in stead people now have to "foster" a child somewhere suitably horrible, so they can have pictures of little "umdedembengo" on their fridge door to show to people.
People do good for a reason, I know. I recently went to a charitable event and it was filled with single men with their hair all gelled up, all extremely busy doing good.
So let's all get over ourselves and admit that there is some self profiling involved in all this- and then maybe we can start discussing whether this Kiva style "have your picture taken in front of a goat and get some cash" facebook of charity is really the best way to spend money in developing countries.
Again - I am not attacking you or your specific loans - I am questioning the overall effect and saying that this convenience store "charity with a smile on the end" that Kiva offers, will lure people looking to help into a false sense of having done the best they can.
It's wishful thinking - it's much more complex than this.
Surely if you look at your portfolio you can see that it's not exactly world hunger looking back at you?