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KIVA: Help Global Poverty on a College Budget

Have you been looking for a way to give back on a low college budget? Check out KIVA! Our own Allie Colina explains this awesome organization.

Ali is a 40-year-old married man, and a father of four children. He has owned a convenience store for two years in Lebanon. He sells drinking water, fruits, vegetables and candies for his community. In order for his town to get pure drinking water and canned food he needs funding to build a storage room that is secure from the dangers of poverty. He is ambitious and hopes to open his own supermarket so that he can help more people in need. 
This story is inspirational, especially for the generous students at Denison. But how can we help a man in Lebanon? We all would love to make a difference but how can one person do that alone? Unfortunately our college budgets don’t always allow for us to give money to every mission or organization. We love to do service and give our time but we often get bogged down with our own rehearsals, practices, meetings, events, and schoolwork to actually find the time to volunteer. KIVA is an online non-profit organization that allows you to give back, and get some in return as well. KIVA was founded in 2005 and since then 893,439 lenders have given 405,863,321$ in loans to 67 different countries. There are over 400 volunteers around the world.

With numbers like that you have to ask: How does it work?
 On the website you can select what kind of issue or topic you want to give aid to. Then you donate as little or as much money as you have. That money gets sent to a micro-lending office and is given to an individual. Your small contribution is added with other contributions and the individual who is suffering through poverty or other hardships receives a check from the micro-lending office. Once the hardship is relived the money is returned to you! You then have the chance to either withdraw your loan and take your money back, or keep it in the system and give it to another person. It’s as easy as chose a borrower, make a loan, get repaid, and do it again all from the comfort of your room! You can track the progress of the borrower and make a lasting connection with someone half way around the world. To see a video about how this works click the link: www.kiva .org. The beauty of this organization is that it proves that everyone can make a difference. You do not need to be a fortune 500 company to make a critical impact on someone’s life. You are not just a college student, you are a valuable member of the privileged world, and you can help those in need with time and with faith and with Kiva. To learn more, to volunteer, or to become a KIVA Fellow please visit their website!

 

History and Communications major. From Philadelphia. Professional Photographer. http://alliecolinaphotography.tumblr.com/
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