Monday, October 31, 2011

Featured Volunteers: Microloan Review and Translation Team Leaders

Author: Daniel Hinds, Review and Translation Program Intern

Have you ever wondered how Kiva manages to post so many loan profiles on

Behind the scenes, our dedicated worldwide teams of editing and translation volunteers review each and every loan description that comes in from the field and prepare them for posting. And with Kiva's success, these teams are growing.

To keep this process working smoothly, several volunteers step up to the plate every year to lead teams of up to 30 Kiva Editors or Translators. These wonderful people support Kiva because they want to use their professional skills to make an impact, and because they love to volunteer with the dynamic, creative organization that's a leader in web-based micro-lending. And they do it all from the comfort of their home office, kitchen table, or neighborhood internet cafe. The Kiva Review and Translation Program truly could not function without these amazing volunteers, so let’s get to know them.

Amy is the Team Leader for the editing team aptly named No. 1 Editing Team.

Amy's Favorite Kiva Story/Moment: Realizing that my actions as a volunteer for Kiva have a direct impact on improving other people's lives.

Erica is the Team Leader of The Write stuff editing team.

Erica's Favorite Kiva Story/Moment: I tried to re-lend my Kiva credit last Christmas and couldn't hit submit fast enough! I had to keep trying until I finally was the fastest lender. It still amazes me to think of the number of people all over the world hitting submit at the same time on the same loan.

Kent is the Team Leader of the Only the Loanly editing team.

Kent's Favorite Kiva Story/Moment: As a fundraiser for another organization, I donated a Kiva gift card as one of the raffle prizes. My friend happened to win the prize. Months later, he put the gift card to use and made his first Kiva loan. He forwarded me a Kiva email with an excited message saying, "my loans are getting repaid!"

Mari is the Team Leader of the Kiva Comma Squad editing team.

Mari's Favorite Kiva Story/Moment: Ran into Kiva in class- a professor pointed me there and I immediately became hooked. Subsequently I've found out that all of the coolest people I am friends with were already in the know- better late than never! I also loved running into my first Samoan loan last week (RPCV Samoa 05-06), made me feel at home.

Margot is the Team Leader of the French translation team Qui Va Bien (get it?).

Margot's Favorite Kiva Story/Moment: Whenever Kiva comes up in conversation, everyone is always so excited by what the organization and borrowers are doing. It's nice to find an international development organization that everyone can get behind.

Veronique is the Team Leader of the French translation team Baobab.

Veronique's Favorite Kiva Story/Moment: Here are a few:
*Hearing one of my team members relate his encounter in Togo with a Kiva entrepreneur.
*Converting people to Kiva and getting so excited talking about it.
*Kiva always provides an interesting topic of conversation at parties; Developing technologies featured by Kiva borrowers yet not well known in the US, or “tontine”, “merry-go-round”, “cesta” aka “lending circles”.

Chris is the Team Leader of the Russian translation team Russiva.

Chris' Favorite Kiva Story/Moment: In Peace Corps Ukraine, seeing firsthand the benefits of microfinance and finding a community of supporters from around the world. I just googled 'microfinance' and Kiva is the top result.

Anna-Maria is the Team Leader of the Spanish translation team Magnificent 7.

Anna Maria's Favorite Kiva Story/Moment: I still remember vividly my introduction to Kiva. A friend sent me $100 to lend which is a wonderfully exciting gift to receive! Sifting through the profiles, I was enthralled with how easy and inviting Kiva made it to give.

Danielle is the Team Leader of the Spanish translation team Los Kivatores.

Danielle's Favorite Kiva Story/Moment: The sense of community that you feel with someone as soon as Kiva comes up in conversation! My favorite moments have been where people who were previously unaware of Kiva have gone off to investigate it further and reported back to me in glowing terms the fantastic work that Kiva does.

Jason is the Team Leader of the Spanish translation team Cambiamos.

Jason's Favorite Kiva Story/Moment: My favorite Kiva moment (so far) occurred just as I began editing loans for the first time. In editing the first group of loans on my own, it was exciting to then see those loans pop up on the website and feel like I was a part of the process! I ended up becoming a lender on a couple of the loans in that first batch and look forward to tracking their progress.

Karen is the Team Leader of the Portuguese/Spanish translation team Latino Linguists.

Karen's Favorite Kiva Story/Moment: So far, the best thing has been seeing loans I have edited going up on the Kiva site. I also enjoy it when I get a loan to edit from a person in a town I have actually visited!

Lisa is the Team Leader of the Spanish translation team Saliendo Adelante.

Lisa's Favorite Kiva Story/Moment: Hosting LA area translators and editors at my house at a translation marathon last year. It was nice to get to know some other volunteers in person, and we got into the holiday spirit eating Christmas tamales while we chatted with volunteers all around the world and put a dent in the big holiday loan queue.

Michael is the Team Leader of the Spanish translation team Mosaico.

Michael's Favorite Kiva Story/Moment: I think my favorite Kiva moment so far was being selected for this Team Leader spot. The idea that I can do something to help so many people and also meet amazing, inspiring folks (even virtually) makes me very happy.

Natalie is the Team Leader of the Spanish translation team Pocas Palabras.

Natalie's Favorite Kiva Story/Moment: I have been a lender with Kiva since 2007, and seeing it evolve and snow ball over this period has been amazing! But my favorite moment? As of today it is a toss up between: hitting the 'lend $25' button on my first loans to two groups in Mexico at Christmas 2007, my "Congratulations, You are a Team Leader" e-mail, and seeing my first edited loan go live to the site! Ask me next month, and I am sure I will have added a whole bunch more favorite moments to my list.

Yvonne is the Team Leader of the Spanish translation team Los Habaneros.

Yvonne's Favorite Kiva Story/Moment: A film crew came to Phoenix, Arizona, to film me for a Kiva B4B promo video. They interviewed me and then flew around the world to Cambodia to film one of my borrowers. We both got to send video messages to one another. It was an amazing experience, and I still get emotional to this day when I watch the video. That was when I knew without a doubt that I had to do whatever I could to support such an amazing organization. We're changing lives.

Please give our next class of Team Leaders a warm welcome as they kick off another fantastic year of supporting Kiva - one loan at a time.

Kiva love,
Kiva Review and Translation Program (RTP) Staff

P.S. Interested in using your professional editing or translation skills to help Kiva out? Check out our Volunteer Page to find out how.