This week marks International Volunteer Week, a celebration of the people that sacrifice their time to selflessly help others. For us, the Kiva community is something we hold close to our hearts as our motivators and inspiration. We would not be here without our partners, borrowers and lenders — but also those who make up our backbone: our volunteers.
Meet a few of the individuals that make things happen at Kiva!
RTP Volunteer: Lorne Warwick
Lorne, an Ontario-native and retiree, found himself looking for a way to make a difference in the world with his new free time. As a former English teacher and a perpetual writer-at-heart, he believed that joining the Review and Translation Program team would be a perfect marriage of his interests and goals. Ever since Lorne began his journey with Kiva in 2008, he has been a top contributor for his team. Lorne remains passionate about his work with Kiva and the difference microfinance makes as a whole.
"Typically I review the loans in our dining room, which is where the laptop is set up. That locale offers a nice view of the backyard and the bird feeder, so I work in a very congenial environment."
Intern: Amniya Shahbozova
Amniya joined Kiva as an intern in her pursuit of a career in microfinance. She has an incredibly unique perspective shaped by her upbringing in Tajikstan and international experiences in Russia, Sweden and the U.S. For Amniya, her home country always holds a special place in her heart. Through her work in Tajikstan, Amniya could see microfinance playing a very important role in helping the 47% to 50% of the population living below the national poverty line gain access to financial resources. She believes that supporting people at the individual level is just as important as supporting entire communities or countries.
“What makes me believe in the potential of microfinance is that I have seen examples of people - including older people and women - who have achieved a sense of dignity and independence from being able to access even small amounts of extra finance.”
Fellow: Paula Vega
After a career in accounting and finance, Paula found her way to Kiva and joined us as a fellow in Puerto Rico. She started her journey as a fellow with no expectations and the mindset of working hard to help make other people’s dreams come true. In her time with Kiva, she was able to connect with borrowers, build deep friendships and really understand and feel what the Kiva community stands for.
“I’m also grateful to the community of Kiva borrowers and trustees in Puerto Rico, for making my job so easy! It was a pleasure to work with people committed to the betterment of Puerto Rico.”
We appreciate all that our volunteers do for us and the rest of the Kiva community around the globe! Stay tuned for more volunteer features throughout International Volunteer Week, running from April 19-25.
Interested in learning about how you can volunteer or intern with us? Find out more here!