No two days are alike when you work at Kiva. We come into the office every day, ready to put our heads down and do the work necessary to help facilitate microloans around the globe, never knowing what the day will bring. However, nothing prepared us for the day in March 2008 when we received an unexpected visitor - California First Lady Maria Shriver! Once it had a chance to sink in that the First Lady of California was getting a tour of our office, everyone sat down around the conference table while Maria told us about how she believed that Kiva could play an important role in empowering entrepreneurs right in our own backyard.
She was right. Poverty exists everywhere – even in the richest countries in the world. There was no reason that we couldn’t apply the model that we had built, helping entrepreneurs in need in the developing world, to entrepreneurs here in the United States.
Since its beginning, Kiva has been about making unlikely connections to help alleviate poverty, and Kiva is really proud that the unlikely connection that we made that day with Maria has blossomed into a great partnership with both the First Lady and the Women’s Conference.
Since that day, we’ve been working together, along with microfinance institutions across the United States to make this idea a reality. As Maria reminded us, we can each have a huge impact in the world for as little as a $25 loan, and we’re happy to work together to add the United States to the long list of countries where Kiva lenders can make that difference. We invite you to help us celebrate the June 10th launch of our domestic microlending program by joining Maria Shriver's Lending Team. Become a microlender. Change a life.