Hezron Maina is a pastor in Africa. He’s also a businessman — one who had a problem. His tiny grain store needed inventory, and his crops were in trouble. What he really needed was a business loan, and for that he needed a miracle.
A hardworking bicycle taxi driver had a similar dilemma, as did a widow with a family to feed. But these people have more than just problems in common. They also share a solution to those problems, thanks to people like Andy Ticcione of Minneapolis, who were willing to put their faith and money in the hands of these hardworking but needy strangers.
Ticcione, a graduate student in Minneapolis, saw Hezron’s photo on Kiva.org, the Web site of an organization that pair people who are willing to risk loaning small amounts of money — as little as $25 — with would-be entrepreneurs trying to make a living in 37 of the poorest countries on Earth.
Andy’s response at seeing Hezron’s photo — a simple image of a man on his farm — was to help.
“If I can give him a hundred dollars that was a gift to me for my birthday, I’m gonna help him out,” Andy said of his reaction.