TDP #004 – Kiva

Well, I am pretty damn excited about this.

Kiva is truly an elegant and very effective part of the solution to poverty and social injustices. And one of the other great things about Kiva is that you can count your donations towards teams. So, if you’d like to…

You can join the KinokoFry Team!

And your loans will count towards the team’s total! I’ve already loaned some money to a few people/groups and I’d be thrilled and honoured if you’d join me. I imagine a lot of you have used Kiva already.

There are lots of other teams, including a Webcomics Team (which I’ve also counted some of my loans towards, it would only be right) which has already loaned a staggering amount of money and helped thousands of people.

On top of the loan, you can donate an amount of money to go towards Kiva’s running costs (and I need this technically to make this a donation comic), so:

KinokoFry has donated $15 to Kiva.


- Rebecca Clements


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I’ve made my first loan a year and a half ago and I am still as excited about Kiva as I was the day I heard of it. Even though I’m a broke student, I try to put $25 on my Kiva account every few months to lend it to an entrepeneur (which I choose from my heart, reading every story very carefully and try to distribute them evenly over the world and between men and women).

Last month I made my 13th loan and this month I will lend to another person as I will have enough credit paid back to me to recycle the money I have donated to my account. I just really love that part, to be able to help so many people with the same amount of money over and over again. Five entrepreneurs have made it to the 100% repayment.

And that is the best part: when the loans are paid back in full, and you know that means that his/her life has just been improved with your help.

I think it’s wonderful you’ve dedicated a comic to Kiva.

That’s fantastic, Aljona! What a great effort. :)

I look forward to loaning regularly when I can too, and when I’m able to recycle some of my money for the first time, I’m sure it’ll feel pretty special.

I feel very happy to have such thoughtful people reading my comics. Thankyou!

Heya. I’ve been reading this for like… 4 or 5 months now, I think. I love your art, and your passion for making the world a better place.

As a policy debater, this particular comic reminded me of my debate topic my freshman year (dealing with Sub-Saharan Africa public health) and the debate topic last year (dealing with poverty in the united states).

I have heard plans directed towards helping women start businesses as relevant to both topics (amid other cases, such as “send sex toys to Africa”… ridiculous). While my position on such cases was always the negative, I was not ever ignorant to the points made.

However, I would like to give my particular opinion on such a matter: poverty, as it is, is not an economic status, rather a social status. In, what our society calls “backwater” tribes, in South America and Africa, they have very few material possessions, even what only equates to maybe a stick with a sharpened stone on it, they are not truly in poverty. The idea of poverty is one concocted by our modern society to explain the lack of social needs someone receives simply because their traditional suppliers have been monetized. People in poverty are there because the system places them in it. Escaping the social status is not as simple as having more money or income. The myriad of social forces on the person in poverty are determined to keep that person in poverty: reliance on government aid, the lack of public acknowledgement of the condition, and the out-of-reach educational options.

The constant action of independent, green/social advocacy groups actually worsens such conditions by supporting Mannheim’s functional rationality over the substantial rationality needed to critically analyze the problems to find long-term solutions. While it is true that the few lives it enriches are invaluable, green/social movements do more long-term harm as the grass-roots support the acts try to raise ultimately fail. People, in all of their social ignorance, assume that because a movement exists, the problems it seeks to eradicate are already taken care of.

Now, as I have not slept in… 30 hours… I am extremely tired and probably a bit incoherent compared to what I could be regarding the subject matter.

I guess… all I can say is to read a certain book I’ve found immensely helpful in understanding the condition of poverty on the world scale, and exactly why development and social movements are counteractive to the solvency they try to achieve: Abandon Affluence by Ted Trainer. It’s a bit of an old book, but vast, *vast* majority of it is still relevant. Also, you may have a hard time finding the book… it’s a bit obscure, and old. I had to get mine all the way from Australia (although the kangaroo bookmark was kickass). :X

So… uhh… wall of text. Hope you read it and give it consideration. :D

interesting. i don’t know if i got it right, since my english is no longer that good, but if i did, then this is similar to something i thought (more like dreamed) of long ago, a way of helping small business around the world! i can hardly believe somethig like that actually exists!

unfortunately, i don’t have much money of my own, since i’m only a student, but i may be able to get some and help those people out… it certainly seems a good cause.

anyway, as comrade Meirnon mentioned above, it is very nice to see you are truly concerned about our world, ms. rebecca, and the fact that you show that concern through your beautiful artwork is just amazing. again, i wish the best for you, your site, and your cause. keep on fightin’!

Please be aware that Kiva loans do not reach the individual(s) featured on Kiva ‘profiles’. Kiva’s purpose is to finance global MFIs by using profiles of their clients as a (somewhat deceptive) marketing tool. By the time you read about an individual, they have already received funding. Your contribution will be used to fund someone else.

This is not necessarily a bad thing, it’s just not what you might expect. Kiva is still an excellent point of entry for potential microfinance donors.

Source(s) compiled:

Thank you so much for spreading the word about this wonderful organization! I’ve been with Kiva for about two years and love seeing my funds continue to be replenished so I can loan to others.
I’m so glad you mentioned Half the Sky, too; I just finished reading the book and it was INCREDIBLE. It should be required reading for everyone in the developed world.
Finally, I love your comics and artistry; they make me smile and often remind me of myself. :)

Meirnon has it right. If most of the donors would look hard enough, outside their front door, they would find someone locally, who needs help just as badly, if not more than some stranger in another country. This type of program is designed to help people from civilization achieve a sense of benevolence; not to eliminate poverty or some other fantasy.

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