Be careful where you choose to buy gift cards this year. The recession has walloped many businesses, causing them to close their doors. Considering the weak holiday sales most have experienced, more are likely to fail in the new year. The last thing you want to do is spend your hard-earned money on a gift card that becomes worthless before your loved one can use it.
Big business isn’t the only sector suffering this year. Non-profits, small businesses and families around the world are struggling. So here’s a gift suggestion for you: purchase Kiva.org gift certificates and give your loved ones the opportunity to sponsor a business operated by the working poor. Help these individuals and communities make great strides towards economic independence.
Here’s how Kiva.org’s microfinance program works:
- Purchase gift certificate(s) online for as little as $25 each. Print your gift certificate — or save time and postage and email them to your loved one.
- Your loved one gets to select a specific entrepreneur in the developing world and uses your gift to fund a small 0% loan – empowering the entrepreneur to lift themselves out of poverty. Each pre-screened entrepreneur is hard-working and hopes to create a sustainable livelihood.
- Your loved one watches the entrepreneur’s small business grow over the following months via email updates and gets repaid as the business succeeds.
- As the loan is repaid, your loved one can withdraw your gift to spend as they wish, or they can recycle your gift and lend again (and again and again)!
I’ve given several of these gift certificates to others and they have been well received. My holiday tip for you — avoid the traffic and crowds and give someone the power to change lives!
Accept my lender invitation by clicking here. Fill out the short form, then click on “Kiva Gifts” at the top of the page. Tell Kiva your gift certificate recipient’s name, then print and/or email the certificate to your loved one.