Monday, May 16, 2011

Athletes Give Kiva a Run for Their Money

The enthusiastic support we have from our lenders continuously grows in new and widely creative ways, and now they’re even engaging with the triathlon community!  Kiva Lender, Dan Kalleward, of West Michigan will be directing two triathlons that support the efforts of Kiva this coming July, using the campaign name “TriKiva” to encourage greater local awareness while raising funds for Kiva.  

The races are sanctioned by USA Triathlon, approved by a laundry list of government authorities and landowners, and applauded by the socially-engaged environment of Kalamazoo, Michigan for the events’ community presence.  The TriKiva Team just began offering sponsorship packages, with the first being presented to Breakaway Bicyles in Kalamazoo.

Special notes from Kiva Supporter: Dan Kalleward
Kiva Co-Founder, Jessica Jackley, often mentions the beauty in our shared experiences.  I’ve appreciated this idea both from direct engagement with other people and the dynamic of our human interdependence.  Our lives are defined by our conscious actions as well as the things we do without realization.  We are shaped by the decisions of people we know intimately, and those we don’t know at all.  How will we engage with the community around us?  How will our experiences impact other human lives?  These questions became important to me when I saw the social impact of events, and the observations I made from others as I literally ran past them.

I’ve been defined in several ways, as an event producer more than anything else.  But nothing was more self-defining as being a runner, especially in Chicago.  I ran anywhere and almost everywhere throughout the city.  I’d run to Lincoln Park Zoo after close, then to Michigan Avenue with its many side-streets and endless tourists, and I never missed the Lakeshore with the unmistakable sound of her waves.  Running had the uncanny effect in making everything around me seem peaceful and quiet (tourists included).

A running injury ended my time in Chicago, but it became an opportunity to move toward what I’d always wanted.

Kalamazoo to Kiva
I moved back to my hometown of Kalamazoo, Michigan wanting to build a race; something I could call my own.  I’d known of Kiva after reviewing a PBS Frontline News story years ago, and I was shocked that almost everyone in Kalamazoo had yet to hear of this inspiring organization.  A mentor once taught me about the importance of bringing attention to the valuable, and he showed me how to do so with paintbrushes and drawing pencils before he died.  I live by his philosophy.

With triathlons at my disposal, TriKiva was molded as a way to show people how they could support Kiva while having an incredible time doing so.  A shared experience.

Want to Show Your Support for TriKiva?  There are several ways: 

Get Active: Do you live near Michigan?  The Gull Lake Triathlon offers 2 and 3-person relays!  You can register for the race with one or two of your friends, choosing one person each for the swim, bike, and running portions.  Each of you will receive a Kiva Card containing $25 in Kiva credit for use on

Create: Plan a volleyball tournament with your friends and support Kiva through our lending team, Athletes for Kiva.  Would you like help with planning an event of your own?  Please email me at for more information!

Educate: Does your school know about Kiva?  If not, you can play a proactive role in forming a Kiva Chapter on your campus!  Visit Campus Kiva to learn more. 

Join: Become a member of the Athletes for Kiva Lending Team.  You'll be able to support TriKiva’s efforts while keeping track of the events in support of Kiva.

Visit: Drop by our website to learn more!

Side Note from Jonathon Stalls
“Dan and the TriKiva Team are outstanding.  Through raw passion and many long nights they are working hard to pioneer efforts in combining two globally successful models in empowering people - sports and micro-finance.  Let's continue building the incredible momentum that fueled the Kiva Walk and Friends of Bob Harris lending teams.  Please join me in supporting TriKiva and The Athletes for Kiva Lending Team!  Wahoo!"

**Disclaimer: The Gull Lake Triathlon and Ramona Park Youth Triathlon are solely organized and operated by Orsus. Except with respect to any proceeds which are provided to Kiva Microfunds, the event is not affiliated with Kiva Microfunds or Any transactions made with respect to the event or information shared with the sponsors or organizers of the event are independent of and are not directed to, Kiva Microfunds or**