Monday, March 1, 2010

KIVA - Loans That Change Lives

At our first team meeting last week, it was suggested that the team might want to participate in some type of outreach program. is an organization whose mission statement is to connect people, through lending, for the purpose of alleviating poverty. They help third world artists (and others) become self sufficient.

Through Kiva, our team could lend money to these artists and craft persons who are looking to start and grow their businesses.

The loans start at just $25.00 and the great thing about Kiva is that as the loans get repaid, we can relend the same funds back out again to help someone else. I have my own Kiva account which I started with $100.00 and have made $250.00 (10 @ $25.00) in loans as funds were repaid and I was able to loan the same funds out again and again.

And because the money is a loan and not a donation, a partnership relationship develops and not a benefactor relationship. This allows mutual dignity and respect and creates a true sense of community something that is very much what our Artisan Collective is all about.

There will not be a forced participation in the fundraising, but for anyone who wants to participate there are many ways we can do this.

We could have a Kiva week where anyone wanting to participate could donate a certain percentage of sales for that week or have specific items tagged for Kiva, donate our team challenge items, different people could do different things, etc. At our next team meeting we will be discussing different fundraising ideas and you can also leave a comment below with your thoughts.


  1. I think Kiva is a wonderful idea and I would be very up for contributing in any way ! Have thought about this in the past and never got around to doing anything about it.

  2. This is such a great suggestion, Cat! I think for me it would be easiest to just donate a certain amount. Then I don't have to worry about keeping track of items or percentages.

  3. Cat, this is brilliant! As artists, we all want to feel like we're 'giving back' and this is the perfect way to do it. My preference would be to make the initial donation as you did, and to keep reinvesting with that amount, so to speak. Thanks for your wonderful post!

  4. Great Idea :) My friend started loaning to Kiva a while back.. I'll go and check out their website to learn more about it! :) - Regina (IslaNewYork)

  5. This is a fabulous idea, I have never heard of Kiva before. I'm off to learn more!

  6. A friend of mine has been doing Kiva for several years now and I started a tradition a few Christmases ago by giving a gift certificate to each of my children and their families - together they found people they wanted to give their loan to.

    Count me in :)