Getting Back to the Panamanian Loan Program

Last month, I asked for donations to make a Kiva loan to some Central American entrepreneur who needs a helping hand. Many thanks to those who have already given.You are all stars of the rock variety. You are:


If I missed any links for anybody, just let me know.

Then I forgot about it for a couple of weeks. But Ed’s post reminded me about it, so we’re back on.

In case you’re unfamiliar with Kiva, it’s a ridiculously successful charity that enables microlending to worthy small business owners and entrepreneurs in the developing world. Here’s a cool little video (great use of video + Google Earth for storytelling) that explains how it works (again, thanks to Ed):
A Fistful Of Dollars: The Story of a Loan from Kieran Ball on Vimeo.

And your money is the gift that keeps on giving. Once the first loan is paid back, we’ll re-invest the money in another deserving businessman or woman. And we’ll do it again and again. How cool is that?

We raised $165 from the site. Julie and I decided to match that, so we’ve got $330 to loan to a worthy entrepreneur.

Choosing the Recipient

Now we need to choose who should receive the money. As it happens, there’s hardly any entrepreneurs in the system right now. It’s a happy problem, as Kiva describes:

Thanks Kiva Lenders! You’ve funded EVERY loan on the site!! To date, Kiva has enabled lenders to send $57,650,285 to the working poor around the world. Currently, we are experiencing a traffic spike and all previously fundraising loans have been fully funded. Our team is working with Kiva’s Field Partners around the globe to approve new loan applications every day.

$57 million in tiny loans is pretty amazing. But what should we do with the cash? Maybe hang onto it for a week or so to see if any new loans come on stream? Any suggestions?


  1. $57 million?! That’s amazing!

    I think it would be reasonable to hang onto the money you raised for a week or two to see if any new loans show up.

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  3. Keep checking the site, and invest $25 for each loan you see. Then you’ll have an amazing variety of loans and help a lot of people, instead of just helping one.

    Plus, it spreads your risk, so in case something happened to the loan, you’d still be able to reinvest most of the money.

    I do that and it works very well.

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