Sunday, November 14, 2010

Micro Loans and Your Health

Research has shown that giving to others can lead to a healthier, happier and longer life.  Generous behavior reduces depression and risk of suicide in adolescents.  Volunteerism on the part of older adults significantly reduces mortality.  Giving to others enables people to forgive themselves for mistakes; a key element in well-being.

One way to have a lot of fun on the internet and get a health boost while doing so is to log onto a cool site called Kiva.org.  For as little as $25.00,  ordinary people like you and me can be part of the world-wide micro-loan community.  Kiva's mission is to connect people, through lending, for the sake of alleviating poverty.

I have made 14 Kiva loans and I got to pick the recipients.  By viewing the photos and reading the bios, I wait until a person "speaks" to me.   I like loaning to women because I know that when women are able to earn money, they spend it on their children's education and it benefits the entire village.  This morning I loaned $25.00 to contribute to funding a woman in Nicaragua expand her retail store.  She is 60 years old, single and has 4 children.   Other loans have been to a baker in El Salvador and a woman who does charcoal sales in Togo.  She is illiterate but supports her family and sends her children to school.  In many developing countries school  costs money and these people live on so little that they cannot afford uniforms or pencils.  Sending a child to school is a huge deal.  She has paid back 22% of the loan and is right on time with repayments.

My loans to Kenya, Tajikistan, Palestine,  Uganda and Nigeria (Afolabi Ibiwoye seen in this photo) have been paid back 100% and I can re-loan that money.  Yippee!  I am feeling healthier and better already.

Kiva.org is really fun to surf.  Check it out and get healthy too.

5 comments:

KM said...

What an interesting and fantastic way to make a differance in someone's life. How great that they were able to pay you back so the women you made loans to could feel pride of earning enough to pay you back. Beautiful thing you have done to give each of them hope and more oppertunity for a better life for them and their family. Thank you for doing this and letting us know about Kiva!

Anonymous said...

I'm going to give to Kiva right now. Thanks for this great tip and yes, I feel better already

Michael Kirsch, M.D. said...

What a great post and great idea! I am sending the link around.

Daisy said...

This is such a wonderful idea! Thanks! :D

consejo comprar yate said...

Quite worthwhile info, thank you for the article.