While the world could definitely use more love, it also could handle more emotional-charged financiers who would like to help people help themselves … and with no strings attached either.
Kiva is the world’s largest microfinance platform. The organization, which was founded in 200 5by Matt Flannery, Jessica Jackley, and Premal Shah, has raised more than $456 million to fund business projects that would prompt loan officers of most banks to either guffaw, scoff or both, without even raising their heads to look at the applicants and say no.
Many of the applicants are from third-world countries, impoverished, and would not be eligible to qualify for conventional business loans. Members of the Kiva.org are not bankers; they are regular people that are trying to make the world a better place. There are more than 26,000 lending teams that do the financing.
What is in a name? The leading lending group on Kiva is called Atheists, Agnostics, Skeptics, and Freethinkers. The 27,000-plus members have lent more than $12.5 million through 430,039 loans. The second place team is the Kiva Christians, having lent out more than $8.4 million through 242,459 loans.
There are about one million members and not one of the participants is making money from their loans. The founders are indeed special folks.
….“We’re creating a culture of empathy,” Shah said. “Kiva represents a huge community of people coming together to do something selfless, and we’re seeing a lot of engagement with young professionals. The common perception of Millennials is selfish and not at all altruistic, but we’re seeing absolutely the opposite. We’re seeing a groundswell of young people engaged in selfless giving. There’s a real desire to contribute to the common good.”