Thursday, April 14, 2011

Jumping In

So, I've been sitting here, continuing to read the book "Half the Sky" (which I wrote about yesterday)...  And the wheels are turning.

The book is about the oppression of women all over the world - the slave trade, sex trafficking, rapes, assaults, women with no power, no respect, no medical care... and the list goes on.  But the chapter I just finished reading talks about the fact that when women are educated, when they have skills, when they have something to be proud of - they become more assertive.  They stand up for themselves.  They fight back.

So, I'm thinking...  How can I help young women on the other side of the globe find that confidence to fight back?  What would give them self-worth in their own environment?

And then I remembered kiva.org.  It's a microloan organization that connects individuals or small groups of people in poverty-stricken parts of the world - with those of us sitting at our computers with a credit or debit card within reach...  These young women can start an entire business for $300 and make a living selling fruit or rice - and I can help make that happen by giving $25 at a time, right from my couch!

I can help these women find respect for themselves and value in who they are and what they are capable of doing - by simply giving them a loan...

So why not?!

I jumped in with both feet tonight!  I put down the book (I needed a break anyway!) and started up the computer...

I donated toward four loans in Cambodia (where many of the stories in the book are taking place so far), one loan in Pakistan (in the town where part of "A Thousand Splendid Suns" took place), and one in Afghanistan.  A couple of the loans will help families repair or add on to their homes, a couple will help start businesses, and a couple will help with transportation to and from work.

It may not be much.  But it's something.  It's a start.  And it's something I could do without a whole lot of thought...

I'll be curious what bigger ideas come out of the discussion at book group on Tuesday...  From the notes I've been receiving, I think more wheels are a-turnin!


Things I am thankful for today:

1.  Getting to say good-bye to the hubby before he left for a long weekend.
2.  Getting a bunch of putzy work done today.
3.  A canceled meeting - I needed the break.
4.  Pizza.
5.  Challenge.
6.  Having plenty.
7.  Being able to give.
8.  Confidence.
9.  Self-worth. 
10.  Ideas.

1 comment:

Beth said...

I am thinking about Kiva too... I have to wait till next pay day! (ugh) I am glad I could help you out with the meeting cancelation...I really needed it too but didn't realize it until the night... See ya soon!

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