It’s a daunting task to want to make a difference as one person.
As an individual its difficult to know how you can help elevate poverty, create opportunities, support education and strengthen weak economies. Those of you who read my blog regularly already know Kiva is my favorite non-profit organization, providing a world-wide network of micro-finance institutions that lets individuals donate as little as $25 to help create opportunity around the world.
Each month I donate $25 to an individual or group and as re-payments are made I re-lend those payments to new individuals or groups, in a sense, recycling opportunity. I also recently started my own lending team, Heathers Harmony, if you’re interested in becoming a Kiva lender we would consider it an honor to have as a member on our team!
To learn more about Kiva and Heathers Harmony’s involvement please check out my previous posts here.
May’s Kiva loan is going to a group of women located in Sengal, Africa. I first learned of this country via a blog full of witty humor about the life of an American couple living in the country’s capital of Dakar; girl, guy, globe.
The “Banc Villageois” was created on April 9, 2011 and consists of 34 working women who live in the same village. Fattening up livestock and small retail business are their main activities. It is worth noting that one of these women is not taking a loan during this cycle, as she is choosing to take a break.
Momy, the featured borrower, is 54 years old. She is married and the mother of six adult children whose ages range between 20 and 33 years. She is a retailer and buys her goods (groundnut, cowpea, sorrel and the edible wild fruit “sump” or “desert date”) at weekly markets, before reselling her goods in the capital city. She is quite experienced in her field. In the photo, she is standing at the far right, dressed in a large boubou with a shawl wrapped around her shoulders. She is also smiling broadly.
Each time Momy takes a trip [to the capital city], she transports a minimum of 100 kilos of groundnut, 100 kilos of cowpea, large quantities of sorrel, and most importantly, several kilos of sump (an edible wild fruit also called “desert date” which is used for processing into oil and syrup).
Her profits will be used in part to strengthen her savings while the rest will be used to cover daily expenses and to meet the family’s day-to-day needs.