A Hand Up in Tajikistan (and Now Georgia)

This guy? With his funny little eyebrows and very sombre expression? This guy is Murtazo, and he lives in Tajikistan.

He hangs out in Pyandji, is a newly married 28 year old and already has four children. Woah buddy. His life couldn't be more different than mine. He's starting up a cattle breeding business, and he asked for help. So I helped him.

I've posted about Kiva before, it's a great micro-loan charity that helps out people the world over. It's about a hand up, not a hand out. Murtazo, given 5 months, will return my money and I can use it help someone else who isn't eligible for a bank loan (with their crippling interest rates).

It's a pretty nice way to do things, actually. With the same $25, I've helped (along with a few other people throwing their $25 onto the pile) 7 other people in other countries who were just looking for a little help. It's sustainable. It's pretty awesome.

There are a phenomenal number of people whose lives could be made a little more self-sufficient, a little brighter by not a donation, but a LOAN. The money you lend is returned to you, and you can either donate to the Kiva organisation, help someone else, or withdraw it.

If you’re interested in helping out someone yourself, please check out Kiva. It’s a simple, painless process, and the cause is a good one.

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Update 17/11/12

I forgot to mention that if you do join Kiva and loan something to someone using my referral link, I get an extra $25 to loan to someone else.

So thanks guys, together we've helped out George from Daba Kulashi, in Georgia.

George is 34, and supports his wife, two teens and his mother, by running an agricultural business (which, as far as I can tell, means they have a cow + a calf, they hatch chickens, they grow maize, and have a greenhouse where he's trying to grow tomatoes.

George needs a loan so he can fix up his greenhouse and get some fertilisers for those tomatoes - the better the tomatoes he grows, the more he can sell them for, and he can (eventually) step up his living conditions for him + his family. Good, right?

Cheers, team. We're helping George out with his tomatoes.