Iowa Wesleyan College students in a Global Issues course are supporting the entrepreneurial efforts of small businesses in developing countries. The students, taught by Brian Carter and Dr. Bitrus Gwamna, are taking part in a micro-lending program through Kiva.
This fall the students made loans totaling $1,050 to individuals in Africa, Asia and Latin America, in amounts ranging from $50 to $150. Carter said the loans were made to deserving entrepreneurs including farmers and shop owners.
Iowa Wesleyan Global Issues classes have made 98 loans through Kiva over the past three and a half years, according to Carter. This year’s loan amount set a record for the College class.
Kiva’s mission is to connect people, through lending, to help alleviate poverty. The Kiva program combines microfinance with the Internet to create a global community of people connected through lending.
Global Issues students offer shares for sale to the campus community. As loans are repaid, shares can be redeemed or funds can be rolled over into new loans. All loans have been repaid in full on time.
The Global Issues students will present information on their lending program at the Service-Learning Fair to be held Thursday, November 29, from 11 a.m. – noon in the Social Hall and Howe Activity Center on the Iowa Wesleyan College campus.