Urgent Evoke

A crash course in changing the world.

I've heard about micro-finance and admired organizations like Kiva that make it accessible across the globe, but never actually participated in it. When I read about Act 5, my initial desire was to participate in a time bank, but unfortunately none currently exist in my neighborhood. So I figured I should try to do a micro-loan, and see how that goes.

I logged into Kiva and browsed through ten pages of entrepreneurs. Many of them were getting into retail and animal sales, or cosmetics or the repair industry. I wanted my loan to support people dedicated to a sustainable industry. While I appreciate the gumption of people wanting to sell candy, soft drinks, and cows, I don't personally want my money to support that.

The organization on the front page, the Tessito Group, ended up being the one most appealing to me. They're making brooms and oil from palm trees, and while the palm industry isn't the most sustainable in the world as it has caused much deforestation, it is one of the most productive forms of agriculture for making oil and fiber and CAN be done sustainably.

So I made a loan to Tessito, and am looking forward to see what happens now. The money has already been disbursed, my dollars just back filled it. Now the 8 lady entrepreneurs will repay the loan over a year or so.

I'm excited to participate in something like this. Hopefully loans like this will encourage more and more entrepreneurs worldwide to take their future into their own hands.

Views: 25

Comment by Sarah Shaw Tatoun on May 10, 2010 at 5:39pm
Great, Nick! Please take a look at Riko's Kiva page and consider joining the Kiva Evoke lending team as well. As of today, Evoke players have donated $850 through the lending team!
Comment by Wintermute on May 10, 2010 at 5:40pm
maybe you can encourage them to use sustainable practices?
Comment by Nick Heyming on May 10, 2010 at 9:45pm
Good thought wintermute, but I'm not sure about arm-chair quarterbacking for ladies on another continent who've been doing this their wh*** lives...
Comment by Wintermute on May 10, 2010 at 9:48pm
ahaha well said
Comment by Nicholas Nagao on May 11, 2010 at 4:34am
Nick, I love the idea and I think I'll copy you just to find out more about Kiva and the process.
Comment by Nicholas Nagao on May 11, 2010 at 4:46am
Nick, thanks for the idea! I went and donated to this group of women selling fruits and vegetables :)

Comment by Nicholas Nagao on May 11, 2010 at 4:47am
Correction, I loaned them some money...I love the idea...I might have extra money to loan after they pay it back to me too!


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