Last fall I explored kiva.org for the first time and was immediately hooked. I made my first loan of $25.00 to a group of women in Uganda who run a beauty salon. When a bit of payment was returned, I added a second loan to a woman in Ghana who sells food on the street as the source of income for her family. For about the last week I've had a credit of +$7.00 and wanted to get that money working again. However, ever time I tried to do a loan, the loan was already funded.
In the past two months Kiva has become an overwhelming success. People around the world are finding this and making loans. Many of us go in and find everything funded and the Kiva staff have to keep putting up messages asking us not to be frustrated and keep coming back.
Today I had good luck. I went to the web site and used my credit plus a bit more towards a loan needed by a woman in the Ukraine who sells shoes in the market.
Every time I read the stories of these women, I'm humbled by their courage and hard work. If you've never looked at Kiva, please do so.
Addendum: When I made my part of the loan about 30 minutes ago, it was about 50% funded towards a goal of $1075. In that period of time it became fully funded. The loans came from many places in the United States, many places in Europe, and one from the United Arab Emerites. Kiva is really a way for the world to help others in the world.