Make the World Better

Posted on October 15, 2007  Comments (13)

Three ways to make the world better. First, Kiva is lets you loan money directly to an entrepreneur of your choice. Kiva provides loans through partners (operating in the countries) to the entrepreneurs. Those partners do charge the entrepreneurs interest (to fund the operations of the lending partner). Kiva pays the principle back to you but does not pay interest. And if the entrepreneur defaults then you do not get your capital paid back (in other words you lose the money you loaned). See my post: Helping Capitalism Make the World Better (if you donate to Kiva I have a Curious Cat Kivan – comment to have you link added).

Second, donate using the widget displayed in this post: to William Kamkwamba who built his own windmill in Malawi to get electricity for his home. The donations go to help him with his education and engineering projects. He is a young student and engineer. I have donated $50, I would love to see readers donate – do so and send me a link to your personal blog or personal home page and I will update this post with a link (only to a site obviously associated with you – I reserve the right to link or not link to whoever I want). [the campaign is over so I removed the widget – $943 was raised, the goal was $2,000]. A recent post to his blog: My sisters and cousins with their first books:

Some well-wishers sent many children’s books that are written or take place in countries around Africa in addition to English and American classics such as Where the Wild Things Are. All the children in my neighborhood, most of whom are cousins or sisters share these new books.

Third, create a Kiva like setup for donations that could be used to provide a source for finding remarkable people that have plans for possible donated funds. The potential is huge.

Related: Children’s booksAppropriate TechnologyWhat Kids can LearnLesson on Life$100 Laptop UpdateMillennium Development Goals

13 Responses to “Make the World Better”

  1. Tyler Durden
    October 16th, 2007 @ 1:17 am

    Why send your money overseas when there are so many needy people right here in the USA?

  2. Matthew Anton
    October 18th, 2007 @ 6:13 pm

    idk, its easy to think in such concrete terms as “us” and them, but what is an American really. We are all people..we all have needs and wants. We need compassion, love, support, and understanding. This is why international aide is important as well as building our reputation worldwide.

  3. curiouscat
    October 20th, 2007 @ 10:20 am

    I donate money to help people. There are several reasons to help people that are not within the USA. First, my goal is to help people, not just people in the USA. Second, my taxes give more than I donate each year to help those in the USA. Third, it is pretty common knowledge the USA while incredibly rich gives very little to help people outside the USA. Fourth, I have lived overseas and see that people everywhere are the same and deserve help from those who are well off (and many that see themselves as poorly off in the USA are very well off when you look at everyone in the world).

    Fifth, the benefits derived from fairly small amounts of money are much larger overseas. Giving $150 to someone to start a business in Mali can change their life, their children’s lives, the lives of those they are able to hire… The same cannot be said of giving $150 to someone in the USA. Sixth, those in the USA have huge advantages. Yes plenty of people in the USA struggle and deserve some charity. But very few people in the USA have anywhere close to the struggles billions of others people have. The opportunities the USA are great if someone is willing to work hard (that doesn’t mean they can be rich easily, but they can learn at free schools and libraries, they can get jobs that pay enough to put food on the table, they have indoor plumbing, they have electricity, they have safe water…). That is just not the case for billions of people alive today.

    And there are many other reasons to treat people outside the USA in the same way you treat people inside the USA in my opinion. Others can believe and donate how they wish. When the USA was forming people thought of themselves first as Virginians or Pennsylvanians and in some minor way as Americans. Now people in the USA mainly think of themselves as Americans and in some way some think of themselves as residents of their state. I would hope we can grow to think of ourselves as people first and where we happen to live (say in the USA versus Mexico, Tanzania or Singapore) is not a huge deal (and not something that would be a large factor in who we want to help).

    That said I do give significantly to charities are least partially focused in the USA: Trickle Up (micro-lending worldwide and in the USA), Concord Coalition (to try and reduce the deferred taxes current USA politicians are passing on to future generations as debt), Habitat for Humanity (housing – ownership opportunities, I direct this to the USA), Environmental Defense Fund, Arlington Housing Corporation (affordable housing), Appalachian Trail Conservancy and PLoS (sharing scientific knowledge).

  4. CuriousCat: Uruguay buys first $100 laptops
    October 30th, 2007 @ 8:32 am

    The first official order for the so-called “$100 laptop” has been placed…

  5. Frontline Explores Kiva in Uganda at Curious Cat Investing and Economics Blog
    November 18th, 2007 @ 1:08 pm

    it is great to see how people can take small loans and some effort and financial literacy to make a living for themselves…

  6. CuriousCat: A Child’s View of the OLPC Laptop
    December 12th, 2007 @ 7:54 pm

    “I just seemed to work it out. It was rather easy. I didn’t even need help.”

  7. Wayne Porter: Virtual Wheat Raises Funds for Charity- Tune to AM Radio
    December 27th, 2007 @ 8:55 am

    […] consider Kiva which I found via John Hunter’s Curious Cat blog after he left a comment on my own blog during a science fiction back and forth. You can learn more about my experience with Micro Lending here […]

  8. CuriousCat: Treated Mosquito Nets Prevent Malaria
    February 3rd, 2008 @ 1:31 pm

    The result was 44 percent fewer deaths than among children not sleeping under nets. Insecticide-treated mosquito nets kill mosquitoes on contact…

  9. CuriousCat » Education is Opportunity
    February 26th, 2008 @ 6:18 pm

    Yogi Patel, a retired chemical engineer and motel owner from Dallas, was nearing the end of his presentation about the need to tackle illiteracy in India when he put up a slide showing a thumb impression: his dad’s. “I’ve never needed anyone to tell me just how important education is,”

  10. Kiva - Provide a Helping Hand at Curious Cat Investing and Economics Blog
    February 28th, 2008 @ 11:14 am

    The entrepreneurs I helped fund are located in: Togo, Dominican Republic, Senegal, Nicaragua, Bolivia and Uganda…

  11. Giving People the Opportunity to Succeed at Curious Cat Investing and Economics Blog
    May 15th, 2008 @ 10:14 am

    “There are many NGOs who train poor Cambodians, but what this country needs is jobs. You can train people all you like, but if no one employs them, you’ll have frustrated skilled people who are unable to use their skills…”

  12. Curious Cat Science and Engineering Blog » Electric Wind
    January 21st, 2010 @ 11:49 am

    His talk of the famine, not being able to afford school and putting together a windmill using scrape parts and a few books from the library (donated by the American government …

  13. Samuel Adams Acts Like a Good Neighbor » Curious Cat Management Blog
    July 25th, 2012 @ 8:13 pm

    I can see a farmer helping out his neighbors in a similar way. But I don’t see companies acting this way often. I applaud Boston Beer’s action…

Leave a Reply