Kiva initially repaid lenders at the end of the loan term (typically 10 months to 18 months), but they've just changed their policy so that they repay lenders each time the loan recipient pays an installment (typically once a month). So you can get your money back faster.
I just went online to lend out my accumulated "Kiva credit." A lot of other people were doing the same thing, presumably because of this change in policy. I was refreshing the pages of several loan requests and watching the "amount still needed" drop every minute.
It is cool to watch people trying to help other people.
My lender page: http://www.kiva.org/lender/firecatstef