Sep 8, 2014 KE Kenya

My first boda experience in Kenya occurred on a wet morning, in the pitch-black darkness that is the 5 o'clock hour, on uneven dirt roads winding through the rural farmland of Isibania, Kenya.  I was wearing the broken helmet of a former Kiva Fellow who had been in a motorcycle accident in exactly these conditions.   The beauty of being a person afflicted with many fears is that is doesn’t take much to experience an adrenaline rush.  In this situation, I might as well have been free climbing Mt. Kenya for the amount of dopamine that was rushing through my brain.  My... Continue Reading >>


Sep 7, 2014 ZW Zimbabwe

After spending 1.5 months in Zimbabwe I wanted to share some of the not-so-commonly-known facts and some of my observations about this beautiful country and its people. I tried to compile my favorite 10 facts below: 1. Everyone is extremely friendly and warm. 2. Zimbo’s have a very weird english accent. To me, it sounds like a mix of British and Jamaican accents. 3. In addition to the accent, Zimbo’s have also adopted the character of the...
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Aug 28, 2014 PE Peru

Photograph by Zach Land-Miller, KF23
To foreigners, Peruvians, and many Limeños alike, San Juan de Lurigancho is merely an underdeveloped, overcrowded, and unsafe district nestled into one of the peaks on Lima’s perimeter, called el cerro San Cristobal. Their exposure to the district is often limited to glimpsing its distant multi-colored homes from the center of Lima or driving through the area in order to reach the summit’s iconic cross, la Cruz del Cerro San Cristobal, where panoramic views of the city await.... Continue Reading >>


Aug 26, 2014 KE Kenya

Check out Kiva's most recent Exposure post, featuring inspiring stories of borrowers doing everything from sheltering orphans to creating a safe space for HIV-positive people: Continue Reading >>


Aug 14, 2014 CO Colombia

 
For the last 57 years Medellin has celebrated los silleteros (pictured above), the men and women who used to carry people and cargo on their backs on chairs, including carrying the sick to doctors. Los silleteros are celebrated at the 10 day Feria de Las Flores (Festival of Flowers), which proved once again that Colombians know how to dance, eat, celebrate their culture and work hard. On any given day of the Festival of Flowers you could find at least 20 events, exhibits or concerts occuring all over the city and surrounding... Continue Reading >>


Aug 13, 2014 US United States

Working with a borrower like Athene inspires me because she represents true ambition and commitment; both traits that are essential in becoming successful as an entrepreneur.  Athene is the owner of Sweet Pea Prop Shop, an online store that sells newborn clothing to professional photographers as props. She created her business in an effort to re-integrate into a slowly recovering economy and to convert her dreams of entrepreneurship and creative self-expression into a reality. Her challenge to date has been keeping up with demand, which is why she needs a loan: she needs to hire... Continue Reading >>


Aug 8, 2014 KE Kenya

“We don’t think life can be more bad than here in Kenya right now…. we wish this to end soon,” says Joyce a 19-year-old Congolese refugee and single mother of two.  In 2009, at the age of 15, Joyce and her family fled the war in Umoja, Democratic Republic of Congo in search of safe land. One day they heard on the radio that there was safety in Kenya. After two months of traveling, they arrived in Nairobi, with only enough money for some food, transport and the clothes on their back.  After registering with the United Nation’s High Commission for Refugees and the government’s... Continue Reading >>


Jul 31, 2014 ZW Zimbabwe

I moved to South Africa from Zimbabwe two weeks ago for the second placement of my fellowship. As part of my work for expanding Kiva’s partnerships within South Africa, I have been meeting with lots of interesting organizations with very innovative business models. Whenever I mention that I worked in Zimbabwe before arriving to South Africa, they cannot stop talking about the entrepreneurial spirit of the Zimbabweans and how hard working individuals they are.    They are so right. I can attest, first hand, to this fact. When I browse through pages of scribbles and infinite photos... Continue Reading >>


Jul 31, 2014 UG Uganda

As a dedication, this post is a bit of a departure from your regularly scheduled Kiva Fellows programming. For this I ask your forgiveness - I'm writing for a special reason, which you'll discover soon.   Given the amount of distressing news in the media lately, it can be easy to lose sight of all the kindness and compassion in the world. On a recent trip through western Uganda, I was reminded and inspired by numerous examples of humanity at its best. Here are just a few:   As my colleague Sharon and I waited at the bus station in Kampala, she spotted a former classmate from her... Continue Reading >>


Jul 30, 2014 CO Colombia

Its been 10 months since I left my previous job in Los Angeles and had the privilege to become a Kiva Fellow.  I began working in beautiful Kenya and am now in colorful Colombia. Though geographically far apart, there are more similarities between the two countries than one might think.  
Some of my fondest memories are from visiting about 20 Kiva borrowers all over Kenya.  While riding countless matatus (public transportation vans) and boda boda (motorcycles), I got a taste of...
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