$700,000 and still accelerating!

Congrats to Friends of Bob Harris, the Kiva lending team I nominally captain (although all I really do is cheerlead) on passing the $700,000 mark!

FoBH has also just entered Kiva's all-time top ten teams in sheer number of loans made, passing Kiva France, with a current total of over 25,000 loans to clinics, schools, and small businesses in more than 55 countries.

I look at those numbers and frankly can't quite even imagine this much generosity brewing up so quickly from so many people. I don't even know what to say about it. Awesome, wonderful, fantastic, and so on!

Onward! Team Norway, we're coming for you!

Nepalling work conditions

A frequent sight on the outskirts of Kathmandu:

Such a stunningly beautiful country.

Such sweet, welcoming people. 

So much poverty.  So much backbreaking work.

I hope Urmila and the other great folks at BPW Patan, the microfinance bank I was here to visit, manage to do as much good as they intend to. 

Their work is as much uphill as everyone else's here.

 

PS my new friends Claudine and Brian have recently transitioned from white-collar America to living, working, and blogging in Nepal. Their blog, The Kathmanduo, is fabulous.

Congrats to the 336 most generous people I know

Friends of Bob Harris, the Kiva team growing out of my book project, went over the $250,000 mark this weekend!

To everyone involved, thanks! Your generosity is beyond belief.

Even more unbelievable, 13 hours into February, the team is ranked #1 Kiva-wide for the month (out of almost 17,000 teams), with more than $10,000 raised just so far today.

I really have almost nothing to do with this, other than being a bit of a cheerleader for some amazingly cool folks.

It's an honor. Truly.

Get a Big Box of Electricity Here

Another pic from the Africa trip — this sign was all over Kigali, and it always made me smile:

The way they're electrifying the country now is, well, electrifying. But the way the sign is phrased, I couldn't help but imagine they had these big tubs of the stuff sitting around on shelves.

You come in, maybe carrying a cardboard box or a plastic bag, and they pour you a bunch, with lots of little sparks dripping down the sides, and you go on your way.

Our Kiva team: $200,000 and counting!

Friends of Bob Harris, a team of 279 generous people I'm honored to nominally lead, has just passed the $200,000 mark in total funds raised.

That money has gone to help fund nearly 8,000 microloans to schools, clinics, and mom-and-pop businesses in more than 50 countries across the developing world.

If that's not specific enough, here's an example of what these loans do:

Meet Jacqueline, a mother of three in Kigali, Rwanda, who has used loans like these to grow a tiny business trading cassava and sweet potatoes into a small grocery store — thereby providing a better home, better food, and a better overall life for her beautiful children.

Jacqueline was generous and sweet in sharing her story for my book — a story typical of microfinance clients I've met on four continents so far.

Want to kick in a few bucks? You get paid back about 99 percent of the time, after all. Join us!