Kowai always has great ideas for me to steal — the most recent one is to donate to cool green organizations like Kiva, which lend money to specific entrepreneurs in the developing world to help them overcome poverty and in turn contribute to the economy (the New York Times has covered this initiative, as have other media outlets, so you know they’re legit).
What I love about the website is that it lets you see photos of the entrepreneur, often at their food stand or workshop or studio, and provides detailed descriptions of who they are, where they live, why they want to start this business, how much money they need, how much they’ve raised so far, and you can even see who else has donated.
I decided to give my $25 (not much, but I’ll be doing this regularly from now on) to a man in Ecuador named Dionicio Pascual, who’s starting up a general store. His photo was adorable and he seemed to have his values in order; at the time he’d only raised 5% of his goal so I figured I’d give him a boost. Maybe now he can start buying some rice or pasta in bulk.
I also plan on donating to my favourite charity, the World Wildlife Fund, and might join the Sierra Club, too. And it pretty much goes without saying that I’ll be adopting more than a few chocolate trees. The giving will happen at least once a month, and suggestions are more than welcome.
Photo of Dionicio from Kiva.org