Tuesday, June 10, 2008

The Latest

I've been a little quite lately here on the blog -- I haven't really felt inspired to post lately, so I figured I'd just let things sit for a bit. Nothing earth shattering going on -- I'm heading to Denver in a little under two weeks, which is exciting. Aside from that, I'm working on a new CD, which always takes a while.

Kiva - loans that change lives
One thing that I've really enjoyed getting involved with is a site called Kiva -- essentially, it's a program that makes microloans to individuals and groups in developing countries. The cool part about it is that it allows individuals to sign up to fund the individual loans in whole or in part. For example, a bunch of different people might come together to loan money to a group of farmers in Bolivia to buy more land and equipment to help farm... not just a nameless, faceless group, but THIS group of farmers pictured on the right.

What I love about this program is that instead of donating money to a charity and feeling like it's a drop in the bucket and wondering if it really makes a difference, you get to see exactly who you're helping and where the money goes. What makes it even more satisfying is that you also get to see as they repay the loans month by month, which lets you know that this program really is making a difference. Maybe it doesn't solve the world's problems all at once, but it's moving forward bit by bit. The other cool part is that once the loan is repaid, the amount you contributed is returned, so you can lend it again to someone else. It just keeps cycling through over and over again.

For me it's been a great reminder that change often comes in small steps like that, instead of big leaps. Sometimes I lose sight of that in my own life, as I keep hoping for those big leaps instead of being willing to keep taking those smaller steps. It all makes a difference.

And you too can make a difference (perhaps to this group of farmers or someone else) by visiting Kiva.

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