KIVA is a program that extends loans to extrepreneurs around the world and is currently in two United States cities, New Orleans and Detroit. Micro loans as low as $25 can be contributed and anyone can lend money, you decide who you want to support, you are not contributing money to the organization but to specific individuals. Micro lenders around the world contribute. 450 individuals out of 100,000 started small businesses in the New Orleans area last year which is above the national average of 350 out of 100,000. From their website:
“Kiva is a non-profit organization with a mission to connect people through lending to alleviate poverty. Leveraging the internet and a worldwide network of microfinance institutions, Kiva lets individuals lend as little as $25 to help create opportunity around the world. Learn more about how it works.
Kiva New Orleans will address unmet financing needs of small businesses in the city of New Orleans. Local partners, Good Work Network and ASI Federal Credit Union, will screen applicants and select qualified borrowers to be featured on the Kiva website. Preference will be given to businesses that have identified a specific opportunity or contract that they need the funds to mobilize and grow their business.”
New Orleans is the model city for KIVA in the United States. Some points of the program.
$10,000 maximum loan
36 months loan term
15% interest/no collateral/no credit score – interest rate can be lowered with a good payment history
Borrowers need to have a viable business plan and the ability to repay the loan
Good Work Network processes the application.
The actual loans are posted on the KIVA site and are fully funded within 24 hours
Business support services available
Most banks don’t make small loans and the borrowers from KIVA have been turned down by a financial institution
Loans are funding within 24 hours