Jun 18, 2009
By Bennett Grassano
Look who’s joined team Kiva lately
It takes a lot to make the work we do at Kiva possible. From expertise to awareness building and funding—our supporters make a HUGE difference. Here are some folks you might not know about who have helped Kiva in the first half of 2009:

Ernst & Young: At the 2008, Clinton Global Initiative Annual Meeting, Ernst & Young, the global professional services organization awarded Kiva a donation of $1,000,000 of in-kind resources over three years. As part of its commitment to entrepreneurship and corporate responsibility, Ernst & Young will mobilize its skilled professionals around the world to assist Kiva in increasing the transparency of its micro-lending process.

American Express: With the help of Kiva lenders and American Express Cardmembers, Kiva’s project “Loans that Change Lives” garnered 19,543 votes to earn a $300,000 third place prize in the 2008 Members Project competition. Kiva is using its new funds to expand the selection of business that can be funded on the Kiva Web site. For more information see Membersproject.com

John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation – You’ve probably heard the name a thousand times on NPR. The MacArthur Foundation supports creative people and effective institutions committed to building a more just, verdant, and peaceful world. MacArthur is one of the nation’s largest independent foundations and Kiva is proud to have them aboard as one of its newest supporters. The MacArthur Foundation awarded Kiva a $250,000 general support grant to strengthen Kiva’s online microfinance marketplace.

7Bar Foundation – 7Bar Foundation, though its philanthropic brand and fundraising arm, Lingerie Miami hosts an annual fashion show and fundraiser that celebrates femininity and empowers women through microfinance. The only fashion show to showcase the world’s finest couture and luxury lingerie labels on one runway in the U.S., Lingerie Miami’s two-pronged mission is to raise funds for microfinance Institutions (MFI’s) locally and globally and to create awareness of the power and effectiveness of microfinance to a critical mass of consciousness. As part of the Lingerie Miami event in 2009, 7Bar Foundation raised $50,000 to support Kiva’s efforts to reach more entrepreneurs in Mexico.

Purex – Can you change lives while changing your laundry? It sounds odd at first. What does laundry have to do with Kiva? We asked ourselves the same question. But when we found that some of Purex’s employees were avid Kiva lenders and that they wanted to find a way to let people discover Kiva and make a difference by connecting their Purex purchase with Purex loans to mom entrepreneurs, we thought it would be an interesting experiment in small actions adding up to big impact.

When you purchase Purex® Complete 3-in-1™ Laundry Sheets you can redirect one dollar from your purchase to Kiva. Simply log on to PurexChangesLives.com to learn more about the Purex-Kiva partnership. Try it out. You might find that something as simple as changing laundry can be part of how you change lives with Kiva.

Intel: In 2009, Intel launched the small things challenge. Through this online challenge, Intel will donate 25¢ per click to support Kiva.org and Save the Children. Intel wants to rally millions of people so that 25¢ can become as much as $300,000 in 2009.

Fenwick & West: Fenwick & West is a national law firm that provides comprehensive legal services to technology and life sciences clients of national and international prominence. Fenwick & West provides Kiva with pro-bono legal services and advice. In addition to legal services, the law firm provided Kiva with a donation of $25,000 for general support.

The Deshpande Foundation: The Deshpande Foundation is the family Foundation of Gururaj (“Desh”) and Jaishree Deshpande, of Andover, MA. Founded in 1996, the Deshpande Foundation is one of the leading philanthropic Foundations in Massachusetts and India in the areas of innovation, entrepreneurship and international development. The Deshpande Foundation is helping Kiva figure out how to serve entrepreneurs in India though a $10,000 grant to explore the feasibility of launching Kiva field partnerships in India, including Deshpande Foundation partners in Northern Karnataka.

Thank you to all our new supporters!

For more info and to see more organizations that help make Kiva run, check out our supporters page.

Add new comment

Bennett has a background as a technology entrepreneur, web developer, community leader, fundraiser, and business developer at leading social enterprises. Prior to joining Kiva, Bennett co-founded an open source e-commerce enterprise, led a coalition to establish an award winning arts education collaborative and Beacon School in San Francisco Richmond District, and worked as a web developer for search provider LookSmart. Bennett also served as Director of Institutional Development for TechSoup Global where he earned a grand prize from the Yale School of Management-Goldman Sachs National Nonprofit Business Plan competition for TechSoup Stock, an online product philanthropy service that went on to distribute over $1 billion in technology product donations to NGOs in 24 countries while generating nearly $20M.year in earned income to support the social enterprise’s mission of helping nonprofits achieve their mission through technology. Bennett leads strategic development initiatives at Kiva with major foundations and corporations including the Skoll Foundation, Omidyar Network, Google, Rockefeller Foundation, John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, among others.

Add Your Comments

LendingOnKiva