This summer a few of us at Bmore Biostats agreed to a summer iron blogger challenge. We either had to blog every week or every two weeks. The penalty of not publishing a post in our chosen timeframe was to donate 5 or 10 USD (respectively) to our charity of choice.
I liked the idea of the blogging challenge and thought it would help me keep motivated to keep my blog active during the summer. However, I totally failed and only posted twice during the 16 week summer. That is, I have to donate 14 * 5 = 70 USD. I think that most of us blogged a lot less than what we were hoping to and potentially owe a charity some money. But well, there is no real obligation to donate and I don't expect others to do so. However, I want to do it. Doing so will help me take a iron blogger challenge more seriously next time.
As a charity of my choice, I ended up choosing Kiva. Through them you can loan 25 USD to an individual or group that needs the money to improve their business, home, etc. And in general, you get your money back. Alternatively, you can donate your money from the get go or keep re-loaning it instead of withdrawing it back to your bank.
It is my first time doing something like this, so I am going to ask for the money back and then re-loan it as I see fit. So, because strictly speaking I am not donating it, I decided to increase my entry to 100 USD. That is, 4 Kiva loans.
Kiva recommends lending to different individuals, Kiva partners, and countries to diversify your risk. Being born in Mexico, I wanted to specifically help people from there. If you restrict the search to Mexico, currently there are 13 open loans. From them, I chose:
- Aurea administered by Eblock International. She wants to install a floor in her room. It seems like she has used other Kiva loans to slowly build her house.
- Sonia administered by Kubo Financiero. She wants to buy recycling materials for her business.
- Mujeres Mazahuas Group who are re-stocking their grocery business. The loan is administered by VisionFund Mexico who have gotten loans for over 6 million since 2009. That's a large chunk of the 16 million that Kiva has sent to Mexico.
- Gabino administered by Sistema Biobolsa. He wants a biodigester which will help him in his agriculture business.
Hopefully the loans will be used properly! But like my friend who has experience in micro-banks in Mexico tells me, it is very hard to know that. We'll see what happens.
For the meantime, here is my receipt.
For whatever's worth, here is my Kiva invitation link: kiva.org/invitedby/fellgernon.