We did it. We bought a cow.
Well, sort of. Technically we loaned Mirov Zarobiddin the money so that he could buy the cow himself. We did this through an organization called Kiva, a nonprofit that organizes micro loans in developing countries to aspiring entrepreneurs.
We posted about this last week (for more information, click here) and asked our readers for some advice on who we should give a loan to. The idea was that this was an opportunity for travelers to give back to the world at large–a “thank you” if you will, for all the kindness and goodwill encountered in third world nations while traveling abroad.
The only problem is that Kiva has recently received some great press for the fantastic service they provide and all of the candidates we spotlighted last week received their loans within a day or two.
So, we improvised.
I went back to the site and decided to focus upon Tajikistan, a wonderful, but challenging country I visited a few years ago that was peopled with a tough, hard working populace who were handed the short end of the straw when the Soviet Union collapsed.
Amongst the local candidates seeking loans, was Mirov, a 45-year old father of three who is looking to purchase two heads of cattle. Mirov plans to fatten the cattle over the course of 40-45 days and then sell them for a profit. But that’s not all. Mirov has worked out the math and will repeat the process for the next 12 months–the duration of the loan. At the end of the year, he hopes to have made a profit of 3 heads of cattle and to have fully paid off his loan.
One of the great benefits of Kiva is that they provide semi-regular updates about those who have received loans. In this manner, lenders can see the immediate impact of their loans and how they are making life just a little bit better on the other side of our planet.
And so, as we receive these updates regarding Mirov, we will share them with you. In return, if you plan on traveling to Tajikistan in the near future, perhaps you can stop by and visit our cows.
Happy Holidays everyone!