A Special Father's Day Trip into the Field with Dad

This week, I'm visiting Kiva partners in Colombia with my dad. It's the first time in my 10 years at Kiva that I've been able to take my dad to visit Kiva borrowers in the field. He's been my biggest cheerleader, believed in our dream before many others did and was also one of Kiva's first donors in 2005!

Dad and me visiting Kiva partner Interactuar in Colombia this week 

It's been an amazing trip. So in the spirit of those celebrating Father's Day in more than 75 countries around the world this weekend, I wanted to share the story of one inspiring father we met.

Antonio invited us into his home and introduced us to his darling wife, Rosa, their 3 daughters & 2 grandchildren who he calls the “light of his life.” He then proceeded to make us all gifts on the machine he purchased with a Kiva loan in his adjoining shop. Antonio makes traditional wooden street toys and explained that the machine increased his sales by almost double. He glowed with pride and gratitude as he showed us his craft.

Our visit with Antonio and his family was beyond all my expectations for this trip, and even though our time with them was brief, it was very special. I cried when we said our goodbyes (but not until after we bought some toys to show our appreciation for their hospitality). And to top it off, my dad got to experience the magic first hand. Something he and I will always share.

Happy early Father’s Day to all the dads, stepdads and special role models out there! If you’re feeling inspired, lend to a dad on Kiva today!

About the author

Chelsa Bocci

Chelsa was part of the founding team at Kiva in 2005 and was responsible early on for establishing Kiva's global Microfinance Partnerships program where she managed a great deal of relationships with Kiva's Field Partners, primarily in Africa, and oversaw Kiva's Microfinance Operations programs; Inventory Management and Kiva's expansive Fellows Program. Chelsa is currently responsible for leading Kiva's Marketing and Community teams, which includes Online Marketing, Social Media Marketing, Content Management, Community Engagement and Support. Prior to Kiva, Chelsa was a Corporate Recruiter and Immigration Specialist with Barclays Global Investors. She returned to the U.S. following a period of extensive world travel and work abroad; including Social Work with HIV-positive children in South Africa and tsunami relief efforts in Thailand and Indonesia. Chelsa received her B.S. in Psychology from Santa Clara University, and has completed certifications in Social Performance Management, Framework for Reporting/Analysis/Monitoring/ Evaluation (FRAME), Behavioral Interviewing/Talent Selection, Risk Management Strategies, and Human Resources Management.