Kiva.org is the world’s first and largest crowdfunding platform for social good with a mission to connect people through lending to alleviate poverty. With as little as a $25 loan, anyone can help a borrower start or grow a business, go to school, access clean energy and realize their potential. Since 2005, Kiva and their growing global community of 1.6 million lenders have crowdfunded $1+ billion in microloans to millions of entrepreneurs in 80+ countries, with an average 97% repayment rate.
Lenders have crowdfunded $1.11 billion in microloans to more than 2.7 million entrepreneurs globally.
More than any other platform, Kiva has the ability to bring an entire community together to solve the problem of limited access to capital for small businesses. With Kiva, everyone gets to participate. Anyone with the ability to access Kiva.org can lend as little as $25 to any entrepreneur who applies. If $25 is too steep, you can still participate by offering a character endorsement for a borrower.
In 2011, Kiva began a pilot program within the US to create a more connected experience between lender and borrower. Since then, though borrowers from anywhere within the US are invited to apply, several Kiva Communities have emerged as focal points which help to expand Kiva’s presence domestically by introducing more people to the process of supporting businesses in their backyard.
Along with solutions like our Growth Loan, Kiva’s zero interest platform creates new rungs on the ladder to bankability for small businesses and early stage companies. Greater access to capital translates into more jobs, local value creation, and opportunity for underserved and under-estimated entrepreneurs.
How We Helped
Our partnership with Kiva has existed on multiple levels. It began in 2014 with our pursuit of Louisville becoming a Kiva Community and has matured as we have supported the launch of Kiva Communities in Columbus, Ohio and Tulsa, Oklahoma. In total, we have raised over $750,000 in grant funding and well over $250K+ in match loan funds to support entrepreneurs. As an implementation partner on Kiva Communities, we also learned a thing or two and developed a Playbook for communities wanting to deploy Kiva more effectively in their markets.
Because we believe in the power of Kiva to support local business owners, we also participate on the platform as a Lender (over 120 loans so far) and as a Trustee. Access Ventures endorses borrowers that we know personally, are well-known within a trusted network of friends, or who are currently working with Access Ventures to improve their business models. As a lender, we even leverage our loans to “boost borrowers” – getting them critical first capital to trend their loan or to close the gap on 80% as their loan is about to expire. We have learned that these two critical points in the life of a loan, can really move them over the finish line in funding. (To learn more about this, and other tricks of the trade, check out the Kiva Playbook on our site).
We hope you’ll join us by creating your own Kiva account.