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Monday, December 14, 2009

Live simply, so that others may simply live.



I know I blow money on totally unnecessary crap (but I LOVE my LAMB purse, so back off) and the following is my attempt to redeem myself and my American decadence.

I like to wrap up the semester of supply and demand/scarcity/monetary policy blah blah blah chitchat with something that my students can actually connect with-I have found it with kiva.org. It is a website featuring microentrepreneurs: people in the developing world trying to be self-sufficient but lacking the access to banks and loans that are more available in the good ol' USA.

I first found out about microcredit from a documentary entitled "Small Fortunes" (through BYU's Center for Self-Reliance) that tells the stories of people who have received such loans. After viewing some clips and discussing the issue (some classes included more blank stares than actual discussion...1st period) I showed my kids the website and challenged them to donate. We are shooting for $200 ($1 each-you are impressed with my math skills) and I will match their donations up to $200. This is a great way to give the gift to "the person who has everything" (or just won't tell you what they want) and gives you a warm fuzzy feeling inside...and isn't charity really about making yourself feel better? I jest...

I know money is tight for everyone and it seems like there is someone sticking their hand out asking for donations every which way we turn (back off, Salvation Army), but it is amazing to see how just $10 can change someone's life in the developing world.

Fun fact: Dr. Muhammad Yunus was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2006 (step up your game, Obama) for his work with the Grameen Bank and the microcredit movement.

2 comments:

Urmston Mom said...

So for Christmas /\ (that is a Christmas tree-pretty fancy aren't I) give your mommie dearest a donation to this LOVELY organization. Or the perpetual education fund could be another option that would put a smile on this face. Love you dear daughter!

Jordan and Nikki Brown said...

I LOVE THAT IDEA! I'm not a big fan of buying stuff that people may not want or especially don't need. I went to a microcredit conference while @ BYU & it really amazed me how much positive change can happen when you empower people to better control their lives!