I’ve wanted to do this for a long time – find an organization Solo Practice University can participate in which nurtures and supports entrepreneurs. It’s not so much about donation (though we’ve given away over 100 annual scholarships to SPU), but empowerment for those who wish to rely upon themselves and build a better future on their own terms. After all, that’s what SPU is all about and based upon our feedback, we have been helping our students do so every day! Now we want to reach out to our growing network to help us to empower more budding and growing entrepreneurs.
We are inviting you to join our lending team, Solo Practice University, on Kiva, a non-profit website that allows you to lend as little as $25 to a specific low-income entrepreneur across the globe. You choose who to lend to – whether a new lawyer or barber in the United States, a baker in Afghanistan, a goat herder in Uganda, a farmer in Peru, a restaurateur in Cambodia, or a tailor in Iraq – and as they repay the loan, you get your money back. If you want, once the loan is repaid you can loan again letting your $25 keep working over and over and over helping not just one budding entrepreneur but countless. Pretty sweet, huh? Since its inception six years ago, Kiva’s community has provided more than $170 million in microloans to more than 444,000 industrious individuals on five continents.
Kiva realizes that access to credit is a challenge for entrepreneurs everywhere. Kiva started out as a website focused on developing-world entrepreneurs. In June 2009, Kiva began experimenting with allowing entrepreneurs in the United States to raise money on its website. There are many in the United States who are not necessarily in poverty – just need a loan to build their business – and in this economic climate simply can’t get a traditional small business loan. Therefore, I wouldn’t be surprised if one day soon we see young legal professionals looking to get loans from KIVA.
Once you’re a part of our team, you can choose to have a future loan on Kiva “count” towards our team’s impact. The loan is still yours, and repayments still come to you – but you can also choose to have the loan show up in our team’s collective portfolio, so our team’s overall impact will grow!
SPU just made its first modest loan (which we will continue to increase over time) to get the ball rolling. I hope you will find a way to participate because you have no idea the impact this can have on an individual’s goal to be self-supporting and ultimately transform many lives as the recipient pays it forward.
Please feel free to share this link with your friends! Our team is open to all who wish to join and believe in entrepreneurship
Please check out the Solo Practice University lending team, and learn more about lending teams on Kiva in general.
Enjoy this season of Thanksgiving!
P.S. For those who wonder why SPU doesn’t set up a private loan program for budding lawyers, it has been on our wish list for a long time, even before we opened our doors. However, at this time in our growth cycle it is extremely time-consuming to administer a lending arm both well and fairly. KIVA’s doing an incredible job and I believe we will see more small business owners in the U.S. participating and there will also be professionals who will be asking for loans, including lawyers. I trust we can make the desired impact specifically for the profession then.