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I just made some more loans via http://kiva.org. My "strategy" when lending has been to lend to people in a variety of different countries. But this time around I also decided that I'm not going to make any more loans that are associated with explicitly Christian charities. Personally, I would rather support lenders that don't encourage or require their loan recipients to adopt certain beliefs or behaviors (unrelated to paying back their loan).

I'm sure that not all of the Christian-associated lenders are pushy that way, but some of them, based on the lender descriptions on Kiva, sound like they are. E.g., "Esperanza International Dominican Republic, a partner of HOPE International" includes as part of their lender description:
We define poverty as the condition of the human being as a result of their broken relationships with God, other people, the creation and himself, as a consequence of sin. We expect, then, to assist them in their release from poverty through a transforming development process, which we define as the reconciliation process where the individual is restored to bless and be blessed, becoming an instrument for God’s Kingdom.
I defined "explicitly Christian" as a lender or charity that mentions Christianity in its mission statement.

I did a bunch of this research myself, and afterward I found the following list of Christian-associated lenders. My research agreed with their list. The post and comments also mention some tools that automatically sort Kiva loans in various ways, including exclusion (or inclusion) of religiously affiliated lenders:

http://atheist-monkey.blogspot.com/2009/08/kiva-mfi-checker.html#list

(I am not trying to bash Christianity or tell anyone what to do. This is about my own comfort and beliefs.)

This entry was originally posted at http://firecat.dreamwidth.org/683683.html, where there are comment count unavailable comments.

Comments

( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
leandra333
Jul. 26th, 2010 08:12 pm (UTC)
Thanks for this. I've wanted to donate to Kiva for a long time but definitely not to any religious-related causes. I, of course, didn't want/have time/care enough to do the research. Your list will help me make a better decision.
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )

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