Direct Origin Trading is a farmers collective based in Colombia and Honduras “made up of many small-scale coffee farmers,” whose goal is to offer these small producers “direct access to roasters willing to pay fair prices for their microlots independently.” Many of the farmers that comprise the collective are based in conflict-torn areas of Colombia still recovering from civil war. Now a new microloan initiative created by Kiva is hoping to raise $50,000 to help raise the wages of these coffee producers.
Based in San Francisco, Kiva is a non-profit organization that hopes to help pull people in developing countries out of poverty via microloans. In essence, it works like Kickstarter. Backers contribute an amount of their choosing, but instead of getting some sort of reward, you will—assuming all goes well—get your investment back. No interest, just good will.
According to the microloan site, the $50,000 will help extend Direct Origin Trading’s “pre-financing program to more smallholder farming families, especially in isolated, marginalized areas affected by armed insurgency. This loan will allow Direct Origin to process and export more coffee more efficiently while paying a 50%+ premium to rural farmers.” With eight days left in the campaign, Kiva has raised 66% of their goal, leaving some $16,000 to go as of publication.
They are asking for loans as small as $25 all the way up to $500. Kiva is expecting the loan to last 14 months with repayments occurring as the funds are available to the farmers.
Top image via Kiva.
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