I happened to stop by Kiva.org the other day and happily saw that I had a credit of almost $35.00. Someone has been paying me back - in fact - several someones! I immediately turned around and reloaned the money out to the above 45 year old Togo woman named Benina who runs a small store in which she sells generic items. Her stock was running low and she had requested her first loan to enable her to restock.
This is my ninth loan since I began loaning in October. My goal was one per month and I have exceeded that goal by two loans. I can't help myself - I see that credit and I don't want it just sitting there when it could be helping another mother, like Benina - a mother of five - raise and educate her family.
So far three women have repaid me in full and the others range in repayment from 12% to 87%. There have been no defaults or money lost so far. This lending opportunity handled by Kiva and their field agents is totally a win/win adventure. The thrill of lending what is to me a token amount of money (think 4 to 5 Starbucks lattes) to women in the most under-developed nations in the world while I sit with my feet up at said Starbucks drinking water and a decaf coffee and having an effect on their lives is immeasurable.
It really makes me feel such gratitude for what I have.