Enter kiva.org! Kiva lists loan applications from people all over the world. You can lend money to any of the loans from which your contribution is taken via PayPal. PayPal also accepts credit cards and 100% of the money you donate is given directly to the loan applicant. There are no fees given to PayPal (AKA: Ebay) or Kiva. After you make the loan, it is repaid over time by the individual who initiated the loan. Kiva’s current repayment rate is 99.81%!!! Essentially, you will get your investment back. Currently, the loans do NOT pay interest so your lending is simply a charitable donation that you will eventually recieve back. Donations are NOT tax deductible since you are getting paid back. See more in their help section if you have more questions.
I’m not trying to advocate that you take a hit in your standard of living to start making microloans (I went for a cup of coffee during this and paid $1.90 which could have helped ’save’ a family) but it might be a good idea to look into opening up an account and putting a couple bucks into the system every once in a while; you really could make a difference in someone’s life.
So I just joined. Check out my memberpage!
My first loan is to Juan Carlos in Mexico, he started a grocery store over a year ago and is looking to raise $975 to restock his store. He hopes to repay this loan within 6 months. The test begins with $25 to Juan and a $2.50 donation to Kiva which IS tax deductable. I double checked, PayPal took no cut. Juan fully paid back his loan and di so ahead of schedule!
Second loan is to Lole Lemalu, a 36 year old business woman with four children, she owns a handicraft store in Maagiagi, Samoa and is seeking to borrow $750 to restock her store on a 14 month repayment schedule. The field partner in question boasts a 100% repayment rate.
Third loan is to three entrepreneurs in Peru. They have set a 4 month repayment schedule on a $750 loan.
Kiva Update 03/26/08
Total value of all loans made through Kiva: $25,576,285
Number of Kiva Lenders: 267491
Number of loans that have been funded through Kiva: 38019
Number of Kiva Field Partners (microfinance institutions Kiva partners with): 87
Number of countries Kiva Field Partners are located in: 42
Current repayment rate (all partners): 99.90%
Current default rate (all partners): 0.10%
Average size of loan for funding: $534.63
Average total amount loaned per Kiva Lender (includes reloaned funds): $95.74
Average number of loans per Kiva Lender: 2.46