Kiva Arab Youth
24-year-old Sajeda lives in Zarqa, Jordan. With three young children to help her husband support, Sajeda runs a small tailoring business from her home. Recently, she borrowed 1000 Jordan Dinars (around USD 1400) from a local Jordanian microfinance institution, and is currently repaying the loan. With the fabric, thread, and other sewing materials Sajeda was able to purchase with her loan, her business has expanded and her family’s income has risen along with it.
Sajeda’s loan was made possible by Kiva Arab Youth, a partnership between Silatech and Kiva, the world’s largest online microlending platform. Working through local microfinance institutions in Palestine, Lebanon, Iraq, Jordan and Yemen, Kiva Arab Youth allows visitors to www.kiva.org/arabyouth to lend as little as USD 25 to the young Arab entrepreneur of their choice.
Beginning in April 2012, during its first three months of operation, 20,000 lenders came together to fully finance 750 new youth-run businesses through Kiva Arab Youth. Since Kiva’s inception in 2005, lenders have provided more than $320 million in loans to 800,000 borrowers worldwide.
The concept of direct online microlending is new in the Arab world, and Silatech is working to expand awareness of the many benefits of this alternative to traditional charitable giving.