Kiva Blog Update

Kiva Blog Update,

Kiva U Launches First Kiva Video Game!

Kiva U’s very first video game is live! The interactive game can be played for free, online, with the goal of enabling younger audiences to learn more about microfinance. It helps middle school and high school students understand the microfinance lending cycle, the difference between loans and donations, and more about the main loan uses of Kiva borrowers. It’s the latest project from Ki ...

Kiva Blog Update

Kiva Blog Update,

Amazing Photos of Shell Money in the Solomon Islands

Shell money is a traditional form of currency that was used in the Solomon Islands before bank notes were introduced. Some provinces still use shell money today, primarily for ceremonies, settling disputes, and bridal and land payments. It is beautifully crafted from seashells, often consisting of strings of differently colored shell-beads. Visit Kiva's Medium page to see how it's made!

Kiva Blog Update

Kiva Blog Update,

Dr. Bronner's and Kiva Partner to Support Small-Scale Farmers in Ghana

Kiva and Dr. Bronner's, the family-owned company that makes the most popular brand of natural soap in North America, are kicking off an exciting new partnership called Seedlings for Small Farmers! Starting April 23, Kiva will crowdfund 0% interest loans to support smallholder farmers in Ghana who grow certified organic and fair trade oil palm  used in Dr. Bronner’s soap. And, for a limited ...

Kiva Blog Update

Kiva Blog Update,

Our Hearts are with Nepal

Photo by Flickr user Oliver Whiteside On April 25, the most devastating earthquake to hit Nepal in 80 years claimed the lives of thousands of people and destroyed homes and cultural sites. The Kiva community’s thoughts are with the people of Nepal and all the families that have been affected by this tragedy. Kiva reached out to our two partners in Nepal, Patan Business and Professional Wome ...

Kiva Blog Update

Kiva Blog Update,

Mukula’s Dream: A better future for her boys

Like many women in India, Mukula was a child bride. Now she runs a weaving business with 2 employees out of the workshop in her home. Read her story here>

Kiva Blog Update

Kiva Blog Update,

Toya’s Dream: To overcome tragedy with beauty

“While I was repairing my inner self I was able to at least look better, and that made me…regain my confidence," says Toya. Read her story at Kiva's Medium page>

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  1. Kiva Fellows Update

    The Best Beer in Bangalore!

    The Best Beer in Bangalore! One man’s journey of struggle and redemption… “I Miss Beer!” This was the realization and startling conclusion that I came to a few weeks after moving from Philadelphia to Bangalore to work with Micrograam, Kiva’s field partner. Having lived in the U.S. for my entire adult life, I never appreciated how easy it was to walk into a bar or deli and pick from a wide…

    Posted by Kinjal Icecreamwala

  2. Kiva Fellows Update

    Healthy Women = Healthy Businesses

    Throughout my Kiva fellowship, I have met with a number of borrowers and have personally witnessed the impact that micro-loans have had in their lives whether it be growing their business, providing for their family, learning how to save money, or giving a borrower an opportunity they wouldn’t have otherwise. As with many of Kiva’s field partners, the impact is not only offering a source of…

    Posted by Kelly Diggins

  3. Kiva Fellows Update

    How One Mexican Couple Baked Their Way Through Tragedy

    The smell of melting butter and baking dough wafts through the town of Tetela, a small community nestled among the sugarcane fields in Oaxaca, Mexico. Two neighborhood boys, one clutching a basketball and one walking a rusty bicycle, amble up to Miguel and Irma’s front gate, pressing their noses in the spaces between the metal. ¨Ya tienen pasteles?¨ one of them shouts excitedly. Are your…

    Posted by Carly Schwartz

  4. Kiva Fellows Update

    ¡Say Cheese!

    One of my favorite activities as a Kiva Fellow is meeting with borrowers. And, the borrowers are usually happy to have a visitor and proud to show their business. Recently, I had the privilege of meeting borrower Dianira, who makes cheese daily. With her loan, Dianira was able to purchase more milk because her business is growing by word of mouth. Three times per week she purchases 50 liters of…

    Posted by Kelly Diggins

  5. Kiva Fellows Update

    A Fish Full of Dollars

    Two years ago, Armen took out a loan of $1,625 for his business and since he has just repaid his final installment last month, I decided to pay him a visit to hear about his experience using Kiva. Armen is a fishmonger in Yerevan where he sells trout and sturgeon from the freshwaters of Armenia’s many beautiful rivers and lakes. Armen is an incredibly hard working man and adds real value to…

    Posted by Mark McDonagh

  6. Kiva Fellows Update

    Nuestra Nueva Medellín

    Photocredit Miguel Olaya @flickr At every major turnpike in Medellin there’s a sign that reads, “Nuestra Nueva Medellin” (our new Medellin), part of a larger national campaign aimed at improving Colombia’s image. Happy-go-lucky posters of smiling families and couples on bike rides with words like ‘sostenible’ or ‘saludable’ adorn subway stations and public plazas. And perhaps they’re paying…

    Posted by Laura Mortara

  7. Kiva Fellows Update

    Tammy's Magical Treasure Island Getaway

    When I walked into A Tran's Bay Bike Shop, I was greeted by brightly painted signs, plants  and murals. The entire shop was covered in floor-to-ceiling designs, with bright whirls of color and whimsical figures pedaling their way through a beautiful, enchanted world. Tammy with a few of the new bikes she purchased with her Kiva Zip loan Welcome to the shop! Tammy, the owner of A Tran's Bay…

    Posted by Sara Wilf

  8. Kiva Fellows Update

    How Mexico’s Poorest Women Redefine The Meaning Of Hard Work

    María Lucas at home in her embroidery studio in El Valerio. Hortensia and I trudge up the winding dirt path toward a steep hillside dotted with tiny concrete homes. Clotheslines strung with brightly-colored skirts and shirts bake in the midday Mexican sun. A faded Coca-Cola sign instructs us to ¨¡refrescate ya!¨ for six pesos. Three turkeys strut by, gobbling hello, and a donkey quietly munches…

    Posted by Carly Schwartz

  9. Kiva Fellows Update

    With a donkey cart on the road to improvement

    Safoura is a 46-year-old woman who lives in Dieli, a small village in rural Mali. After losing her husband 12 years ago, she became a single mother of 7 children. She knows life can be challenging.  As a kid, she could only attend primary school. She realizes that this has limited her opportunities a lot. That’s why she does everything within her power to make sure her kids can go to school.  …

    Posted by Koen Verrecht

  10. Kiva Fellows Update

    How to Make a Tortilla – Guatemalan Style

    Mari Cruz is an energetic, friendly, and dynamic 41-year-old woman. About fifteen years ago, she decided to open her own restaurant and took out her first loan to purchase tables and chairs. One year later, Mari Cruz started her own tortillería – a tortilla bakery. Tortillas are served with every meal in Guatemala, so it was better for her restaurant when she had freshly made tortilla from her…

    Posted by Kelly Diggins

  11. Kiva Fellows Update

    School’s IN For Summer

    Summer school is in session! I know what you’re thinking - “Summer school? Sounds like a drag.” The ear-to-ear smiles on these five, six, and seven year-old students’ faces would make you question all of your preconceived notions of summer school. Charmaine (known as Ms. Moses when she walks through the sunflower yellow door) gives these students plenty to smile about, ensuring a balance of…

    Posted by Emily Gutman

  12. Kiva Fellows Update

    Kiva City Milwaukee: It All Started from the Launch

    Terry needed a printer, a website, more sergers and sewing machines, and cutting mats for her MKE Fashion Incubator. It is a creative venue where she offers private lessons, public classes, and workshops in sewing, alterations, hemming, and sergers using as well as co-working space for other aspiring designers. Iris had a business plan for her home-based sewing and crochet business Virtuous By…

    Posted by Linh Nguyen

  13. Kiva Fellows Update

    The Value of 1,000 Ladybugs

    Blair, a successful Kiva Zip borrower, microloan evangelist, and bug expert. If you see a bug in your house, do you reach for a can of Raid? Blair Leano-Helvey, a Kiva Zip borrower in Louisville, KY, wants you to know there’s a better solution. Better for you and your family, better for the planet, and better for small business. If you see a bug in your house, she wants you to…buy more bugs.…

    Posted by Josie Raymond

  14. Kiva Fellows Update

    U.K.R.A.I.N.E.....reflections

    United?.....No. My one-on-one interactions with people across the country, has borne out what some reports on Ukraine state. There are strong and divergent sentiments among different regions and communities. A simplistic analysis may state that the Ukrainians are mainly divided along linguistic or geographical lines – this is not the case on the ground.                                        …

    Posted by Charles Selestine

  15. Kiva Fellows Update

    Keeping warm……with a 700% increase in gas prices

    Imagine you were told that from next month onwards, your utility prices - water, electricity and gas - would go up. Imagine also, that you live in a country where the temperatures during winter months drop to sub-zero, and gas for heating is a critical necessity. Further, do imagine that the stated price increase for gas will be between 500 – 700%, with the promise that it will go up even beyond…

    Posted by Charles Selestine

  16. Kiva Fellows Update

    Doni doni: Farm inputs by mobile layaway

    Imagine you’re a Malian farmer. Once a year you plant your corn, your sorghum, your peanuts, your millet. You pray for solid rainfall and a large enough harvest to feed your family for the year. Once you harvest your crops and sell what you can, you fret about how you’ll manage your money over the next several months, when your income is sporadic and unreliable. Since you live in a rural area,…

    Posted by Amber Stewart

  17. Kiva Fellows Update

    Have You Ridden a Tricycle and Eaten Lechon in the Philippines? I Have

    Greetings from Cabanatuan City, nicknamed the “Tricycle Capital of the Philippines.” Tricycles, made by affixing a sidecar to a motorcycle, are a common means of public transportation in the Philippines. More than 30,000 tricycles for a population of 272,676 people (as of 2010) in Cabanatuan means that there is 1 tricycle for every 9 people in this largest city in the province of Nueva Ecija.…

    Posted by Binh Nguyen

  18. Kiva Fellows Update

    Why I prefer the long way home

    The office of RMCR, the Kiva Partner in Mali where I’m serving as a fellow, is about 2 km away from my home. I’ve made it a habit to walk these 2 km. It should never take more than 20-25 minutes. Yet, usually it takes me 45 minutes to 1 hour to get there. And here’s why I love it.   There are some things about living in Mali that can be uncomfortable and stressful. There is a rebellion going on…

    Posted by Koen Verrecht

  19. Kiva Fellows Update

    Making a House a Home in India

    Let me introduce you to Runu. Runu is a wife, a mother of five, a business owner and a client of Mahashakti Foundation, one of Kiva’s Field Partners in India. Runu has been a client of Mahashakti for a long time. She started with a small loan of just INR 10,000 ($160) which she used to buy a sewing machine to start a tailoring business. After repaying her first loan, she applied for a second,…

    Posted by Darcey Tindall

  20. Kiva Fellows Update

    Thank you Yangon for showing my belly some love

    My main purpose as a Kiva Fellow in Yangon, Myanmar is to work with Proximity Designs, an award winning social enterprise and Kiva’s first partner in the country, as well as meet with many of their borrowers out in the field.  A pleasant by-product of the Fellowship is the ability to experience local culture, namely the cuisine!  Food can be a large part of any culture, but its importance is…

    Posted by Semone Aye