Lend With Care

Tuesday, March 08, 2016

I was introduced to Lend With Care when reading a post by Jo back in September last year. I thought it was only fitting to spread with word a little on my blog too.

Lend With Care offer microfinance loans to small business owners in developing countries.

Being a bit of a cynical old git I did a little Googling about the charity before delving in and found that it was run by Care International, and Deborah Meaden of Dragon's Den is an ambassador, which gave it all the credibility I needed to support it.

This is how it works - you make a contribution of any amount you like to an entreprenuer of your choosing, which goes towards their target loan amount. When contributions reach the full amount requested the money is given to the individual (or group) and they then start to repay the loan over a set amount of time.

It really is that simple.

I made my first loan to Bui van Khuyen in Hoa Binh, Vietnam. He requested a loan to install a biogas tank in his house. This is his story:

Farmers living in rural provinces like Hoa Binh always do their best to find a way out of poverty. Mr. Khuyen is a typical example. He is 53 years old and currently living with his wife and their three children aged between 24 and 29. Both of them work on the farm to make a living. Together they grow rice and rear 12 pigs. Farm products are sold to local merchant for profit.

The living area of Mr. Khuyen’s family is getting more and more polluted due to waste from animals. Seeing the importance of a clean and healthy environment, Mr. Khuyen decided to install a biogas tank in his house. Such installation will definitely reduce pollution and offer people living here a more healthy atmosphere. They will also have a chance to use renewable energy that is generated from the animal waste.

Later that day I received an email to say his loan had reached the target amount and his repayments would start soon.

That was five months ago, the biogas tank should now be installed and working, and I've been receiving regular repayments.

A few weeks ago I used the repayments to contribute towards Bui van Khanh, also in Vietnam.

Here is his story:

Mr. Bui Van Khanh is 35 years old and married with 3 children ages between 16 and 9, all enrolled in school. His parents are old but they are still healthy. The family of 7 lives in a shabby house in Mui village. Like other neighbors, Mr.Khanh’s family relies on agriculture as the main source of their income. Mr. Khanh grows sugarcane on a field of 3000 square meters, fattens 3 pigs and 20 chickens. He sells his farm products to local traders for profit.

Mr. Khanh knows that poor sanitation conditions will leave bad effects on his family’s health, especially his three young children. That’s why he applied for a loan to have a new double vault latrine built. The loan will be used to buy a septic-processing-tank, sand, bricks, cement, and hire some villagers to works as builders and complete the latrine construction.

The latrine should be being built now, if it hasn't been finished already, and I love the idea that not only does the money help Mr Khanh and his family, but the loan will also employ local people to build it.

It appears I have a bit of a thing about sanitation, but there are many different reasons why people apply. You can decide where your money goes and how much you give.

I'm a firm believer in helping others to help themselves, this scheme allows people to make positive changes to their lives by offering small loans they otherwise wouldn't have access to.

It's a great idea, wouldn't you agree?

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  1. That sounds brilliant! I've heard of it, my friend Ellie told me about it, but over the phone so it's nice to read about it!x

    1. This really struck a chord with me when I first heard of it.

  2. This was fascinating to read, Thomas and I have both read their website and started to talk about becoming lenders. Thanks for the heads up!

    1. That's made my day :)
      I really like that the repayments can, and often are, then loaned to someone else, so the project just keeps rolling.
      So glad you're considering it x

  3. I'm feeling really inspired. Think I might give it a go as it's got a really personal feel to it. Thanks for sharing your experience with it. Xx

    1. Great! I was hoping that by sharing my experience that others would consider it. It's so nice that you know where your money is going, rather than just donating to one central pot.

  4. I'm so pleased that you've shared this on your blog, that you've had a positive experience with it yourself and that some of your readers are considering becoming lenders. I've just had another of my loans repaid in full so I shall be lending that money out again to someone else. I really like this way of donating to charity, it isn't just the person you're lending to who benefits and the loans are helping people to help themselves.

    1. As you shared it on your blog, I thought it was fitting for me to share it aswell. I'm really pleased that others are considering it too, in all honesty that's exactly why I shared my experience :)


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