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View Diary: Microcredit: be a Venture Capitalist. (185 comments)

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  •  This sounds like a great idea (none)
    But has anyone done any independent verification that the money is going where its intended? Does anyone have personal experience of the loan being repaid?  For the moment I'll assume they don't send out spam e-mail looking for investors, which would provide some comfort.  

    Sorry, but I've spent almost 30 years being paid to be a cynic. If this program is legitimate, its great, altho its a bit Sally Struthers for me. Despite it being called a loan, its charity. I would have no expectation of being repaid, and thats fine. But by the same token, I have no interest in the specifics of where my money is going, I don't need a feel good story at the end, the feel good story up front is convincing enough that its a good cause.

    •  Both Agree and Disagree w/Kane in CA (4.00)
      Kane in CA is incorrect about microcredit being charity obviously, as microfinancing is a well documented endeavor.  However, he/she does raise a very valid concern about accountability for the money.  

      I've got a group of about 15-20 people ready to donate on another site, but I have no way of verifying A) that Kiva are who they say they are and B) that the money gets to where it is supposed to go.  They said they're partnered with a few orgs who do have longstanding reputations, so I'll contact those and ask about Kiva.  That's all I can think of to do.  If the organizations listed as affiliates on its about page vouch for them, then it's a pretty good guess that they're for real.  

      If anyone has any way of independently validating these people I'd be interested to hear it - save me some legwork.  I'll post the results of my attempts.

    •  Already emailing with Kiva's founder about this (none)
      I NEVER give money to a charity unless I can independently verify it's 501(c)3 status, the designation given to IRS approved tax-exempt non-profits. Nor do I give unless they are also favorably listed with GuideStar, an independent watchdog organization that rates charities based on performance, ethics, correct / timely financial statements / reporting, overhead percentage, etc.

      Kiva's website (in the FAQ) says they are still in the process of incorporating and expect their 501(c)3 approval by November / December of this year. Once they have that, they can apply to GuideStar. If GuideStar rates them favorably, they will immediately have my charitable dollars because the entire micro-lending concept is brilliant, IMHO.

      "Separate ... (is) inherently unequal." Brown v. Board of Education, 5/17/54

      by WereBear Walker on Thu Oct 27, 2005 at 01:06:38 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Let us know what you hear (none)
        I always have the same kinds of concerns about an organization that I only know of through the web.  This may be entirely legitimate (and if it is, it sounds like a really great idea), but for all most of us personally know, the money might not get any farther than the organizers of kiva.org themselves.  I always feel terrible being a cynic, but it's an occupational hazard of having practiced law for nearly 30 years.

        If the diary has scrolled off by the time you hear back from them, please post another one on what you find out.

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