Sarah was actually the very first loan available. I knew I was going to lend to her the moment I saw her photo - any woman who can BBQ gets my vote :)
Here's what her KIVA application said:
"Sarah is 31 years old and is single. She makes a living selling ‘chorizo’ (seasoned pork sausage) sandwiches in the most populous street market in the city of El Alto. Her products are very sought after.
This loan is her first with the institution. Sarah is going to use this loan to buy furnishings for the eatery that she is going to start for her business. Her reason for applying for this loan is that she wants to provide greater convenience to her customers and to produce in greater quantity her products and increase her sales and therefore her earnings. She is very interested in the way in which Kiva works; it seems very noble to her.
Sarah faces challenges in her business such as continuing to study in the university and also she helps her little brother who depends on her. Sarah is a very responsible person as she has to take care of her brothers. Her wish is to become a professional and have her own restaurant and help her little brother until he becomes a professional."
What I love especially about this way of helping people is my dollar goes a long way. I help someone and they pay back my money. Then I lend that same money to the next person. For a small amount of money up front I can go on helping people for years. As I see it I'm recycling my charity dollars :) We can even withdraw the repaid dollars if we want.
If you want to take KIVA out for a test run they have a 'trial' offer at the moment - you can join and lend someone else's money to someone of your choice so you can see how the whole thing works. Then, if you think it's something you'd like to be involved in, you can add your own cash to the cause.