Team Metafilter on Kiva January 14, 2021 4:07 PM   Subscribe

Did you know that Metafilter is one of Kiva's biggest-ever lenders? Here's a team update, and a call for you to help the team lend even more.

Metafilter members have been lending money on the microfinance site Kiva for years. Since every member of the team is technically a team captain, I took it upon myself to update you all about our progress in October 2019. You responded generously and pumped OVER $34,000 in loans out to the world!

So why not do it again?

About Kiva

In case you're not familiar with Kiva, it's an international, crowdfunded nonprofit that provides microloans to people who have trouble accessing traditional banking and loans worldwide. So far, it's funded over $1.5 BILLION in loans. You can learn more about Kiva and its mission here.

About Team Metafilter

Kiva lenders can join teams, and Team Metafilter is 377 members strong! Since 2009, we've:
  • Funded 8,878 loans in 87 countries
  • Reached an average of 23.5 loans per member
  • Lent a whopping $248,925
The last time I posted this update, our team's total lending had dropped over time, from $17,150 in 2017 to $15,950 in 2018 to $14,050 by October 2019.

Then, you stepped up—bigtime. By the end of 2019, we had lent $20,250, a rise of over $34k. And last year, the team lent another $19,625. So far in 2021, Team Metafilter has lent $1,750, and is #7 for all-time amount of loans funded as a team. Maybe we can lend even more in 2021!

Last year was an emotional and financial catastrophe for many people around the world. But we can help others, even if it's in small increments.

How You Can Help

If you haven't joined Team Metafilter, do! Click here to join the team. You can only lend to Kiva in increments of $25, but even if you only invest $25, repayments mean you can slowly use that money to lend more and more over time.

Maybe you're already on Kiva but haven't hooked up your profile to Team Metafilter yet. Do! It's easy and helps you join our collective effort.

If you want to learn more about Kiva's impact, here's their Charity Navigator profile. They received an 85.22/100 score for financial performance in 2018.

Thanks for lending! It's really rewarding for me to see my small investment benefit people all over the world; so far, I've turned an $86 investment into $550 in loans.
posted by mynameisluka to MetaFilter-Related at 4:07 PM (13 comments total) 13 users marked this as a favorite

Here is Wikipedia's page on the impacts of microlending.
posted by aniola at 8:12 PM on January 14, 2021

I meant to contribute a little more post-stimulus but it's been hard to concentrate on anything lately. Thank you for the reminder, mynameisluka!
posted by kimberussell at 6:52 AM on January 15, 2021 [1 favorite]

I've been meaning to join for a long time and now I finally did, thanks for the encouragement!
posted by M. at 11:30 AM on January 15, 2021 [2 favorites]

I want to lend to a entrepreneur in Brazil and I was surprised to see only 4 registered, and all in São Paulo. How do I request / encourage Kiva to expand into other areas outside the metropolis?
It's not that I don't want to lend to other countries, it's just that I would like my $$ to have some effect nearer to where I live, and where there is great need, and in doing so give back in a small way to a country that has given so much to me,
posted by adamvasco at 5:55 AM on January 16, 2021 [2 favorites]

adamvasco, Kiva works (outside the US) with organizations already on the ground to identify candidates and manage the process ("Field partners" in their parlance, which at least in the loans I've made in Asia and Africa have generally been NGOs of some sort). From their FAQ: "Direct loans on Kiva are currently only available to businesses in the US and social enterprises internationally." (Not sure what a "social enterprise" is, in their vocabulary.)

Now, the general lack of candidates in Brazil at all makes me wonder if there are perhaps complications that are difficult to resolve and so participation is very low, or maybe Kiva is quite new there. In any case, probably the most expedient thing you could do is identify groups that are already in the communities near you and see if you can encourage/facilitate them connecting with Kiva to find out requirements to participate. I suspect that on their end this is effectively grant-writing to become part of the network, be able to submit candidates, and then receive and manage the loan to the recipient.
posted by Lyn Never at 10:28 AM on January 16, 2021 [1 favorite]

Joined, made my first loan to a single mom who wants to raise pigs in Ecuador.
posted by signal at 11:43 AM on January 16, 2021 [6 favorites]

I'd love to attribute my Kiva loans to Team MeFi, but then I would not be able to attribute them to Team BookCrossing, so...
posted by Too-Ticky at 6:19 AM on January 17, 2021 [2 favorites]

I also joined. I set up a monthly direct deposit. I'll have to remember to go back on the first.
posted by kathrynm at 10:47 AM on January 17, 2021 [3 favorites]

Thank you for the reminder -- I'm a Metafilter team member but keep forgetting to actually go in and re-lend/add more money to the pot!
posted by kalimac at 9:55 AM on January 18, 2021 [2 favorites]

Thanks for this reminder. I had $150 in there that I had forgotten about (turns out Kiva's notes were going into my spam. Oops.) I set them back in motion.
posted by AgentRocket at 8:30 AM on January 19, 2021 [3 favorites]

I've been meaning to do this for years. Just joined and made my first loan to a widow in Vietnam who needs help building her family a latrine. Thanks for the nudge!
posted by kelborel at 7:11 AM on January 20, 2021 [2 favorites]

I knew of Kiva, but didn't know there was a Metafilter team, so thanks for this update. I'm now a lender! Go Team MeFi!!
posted by pjsky at 9:18 AM on January 26, 2021 [2 favorites]

I made my February loan. It went to a woman starting a bakery.
posted by kathrynm at 7:12 AM on February 2, 2021 [1 favorite]

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