It’s common around the holidays to be giving toward those in need, but a charitable act that can promise longevity, business growth, and economic expansion is much more impactful than a one-time donation.  This year, consider loaning just $25 to a small business owner through a service called Kiva.  

Halima is from a small community in Kaduna state, where she grows maize to support her family.  Halima has been able to send two children to a better school with the profits from her farm, in part thanks to Kiva loans.

Kiva is a micro-funding platform that allows you to provide small loans to people who are trying to create a better life for themselves and their communities.  Many of these people live in impoverished communities and want a hand up, not a handout.  When you loan money, the recipient pledges to repay it within a certain time frame. 100% of every dollar you lend on Kiva goes to funding loans.  

Here’s the coolest part: As you receive repayments, you can re-lend the money in your Kiva account.  So, by putting just $25 in your Kiva account, you can re-lend it over and over and help multiple people without ever contributing another dollar.

My family and I have made quite a few contributions through Kiva.  While we’ve only deposited $2,161 of our own money, we’ve actually made $6,975 in loans by re-lending our repayments.  We’ve supported business owners and people in need in more than 50 countries, in categories like agriculture, retail, sanitation, medical expenses, higher education costs, etc.  

Check out Kiva.org, find a person you’d like to support and lend them $25.  You’ll have made a substantial impact in someone’s life this holiday season, and will have contributed to business growth and economic expansion around the world.  Happy Holidays!