I found out about Kiva a few years ago, and thought it was an exciting way to help lift people out of poverty. After studying Economics and Spanish in college and developing a love of all things Latin America while studing abroad in Argentina, I decided to pursue a career in international development. My first step was to become an intern in the Kiva offices.
I was lucky enough to score an internship with the wonderful Kiva Fellows Program team at Kiva's San Francisco offices! I spent 7 months recruiting applicants to the Fellows Program, evaluating their applications, planning trainings, and following their work in the field. I even got to meet two wonderful classes of fellows, KF17 and KF18.
Seeing all the great work that the Fellows were doing, and being immersed in Kiva's culture made me want to do more for Kiva. I decided to apply to the program, and was accepted as part of the 19th class of Kiva Fellows. So while I must leave Kiva's San Francisco offices, I'll be continuing on as Kiva Fellow in Barranquilla, Colombia.
What is a Kiva Fellow?
The Kiva Fellows program is a volunteer, unpaid position helping to administer microfinance loans in one of the countries that Kiva works in. As a Fellow, I will work directly with a microfinance institution, acting as Kiva's eyes and ears on the ground and expanding Kiva's impact. The microfinance institution that I will be working with is Fundación Mario Santo Domingo, located in Barranquilla on the Caribbean coast of Colombia.
Why you should support
Being a Kiva Fellow is a wonderful opportunity, but the fact remains that it must be fully self-funded and is thus fairly expensive. After 7 months of volunteering my time in Kiva's offices, I can use any help you can offer to help me pay for things like:
-airfare to Colombia
-housing in Barranquilla
-transportation around the region to visit borrowers
-lots of rain gear
If you aren't able to support my campaign, don't worry! You can help out in other ways:
-sharing this with others who might be able to donate
-reading my blogs on the Kiva Fellows Blog
-sending lots of moral support my way while I'm abroad!