Best. Birthday. Ever.

Thanks to the 75+ people who came out to the W hotel in Westwood last week for the combination of Kiva's 6th anniversary, a celebration of the million bucks (!) the Friends of Bob Harris team at has raised to lend to small businesses in the developing world, and my own birthday party.

The million bucks was actually the team's goal for my birthday present (Kiva did a whole blog post about it, in fact), which is also mindblowing—the idea that my birthday would ever be an occasion for hundreds of people to do something nice for thousands of total strangers all over the world… I just don't even know how to respond. (In fact, these 750 sweet folks have made it to over $1.1 million by my birthday, and are already approaching $1.2 million.)

One highlight I'll never forget: I turned around, and more than a dozen folks had put on matching T-shirts proclaiming themselves officially as Friends of Bob Harris.  

It's one thing to know you have a lot of wonderful friends. It's another to see that they've decide they want a uniform. Wow.

Everyone should get to see something like this once in their lives.

Huge, huge thanks.  Now it's on to two million!

The Kiva team keeps breaking records — join today, and you can do a $25 loan for free!

Friends of Bob Harris, the Kiva team that sprouted up around my upcoming book, is frankly blowing my mind.

Across Kiva, more than 600,000 lenders have organized themselves into nearly 20,000 teams.

At right are the fundraising results from July.

I wish I had words for how honored I am to be a small part of this group.  (That's not false modesty; I didn't create the group, and I don't do much, other than just cheer all these kind people on.)

If you're not familiar with microfinance, it's a Nobel Peace Prize-winning solution to poverty that makes financial resources and education available to hundreds of millions of people.

Kiva, meanwhile, is an amazing platform that allows you to lend $25 or more to schools, clinics, farmers, craftspeople, and other mom-and-pop shops in more than 50 countries.

Does it work?  I've spent much of the last two years visiting clients in diverse locales like Peru, Morocco, Bosnia, Lebanon, Rwanda, Nepal, and Cambodia.  I've seen the results with my own eyes.  Yes.  It works.  In some places, it works like gangbusters.

And if you'd like to jump in, today is a great time: Kiva is offering 4000 of these $25 loans for free to new members.  They're going fast — about 20 have gone in the time it took me to write this far.

Kiva puts up the cash — you just open an account, choose a recipient whose loan you'd like to see financed, and boom — off the money goes.  You can then watch as your chosen client grows their business and repays the loan.  You'll get hooked, doing good this easily.  Pretty soon you'll want to put a little of your own cash to work, too.  (My repayment rate has been over 99 percent, so yes, you get paid back.)

The 4000 free loans to new members are zipping away — 19 more have gone since the middle of this post.  Wait — 20.  No, 21.  Okay, I'll hit "publish."  Hurry!