The Kiva Pledge & CouchSurfing Lending Team

Posted by:     Tags:      Posted date:  April 9, 2011  |  18 Comments
Insert Drawing :)

A few months ago, I had a little “promotion” where I promised to give $25 to Kiva if I could get 100 fans on my Facebook page. I had just started using Twitter and the idea of social media marketing was new to me, so I thought it would be a fun exercise. It was fun, but with internet access at $5/HR on the ship I probably spent $50 to reach my goal. So that was kinda stupid – I could have given that money to Kiva rather than embark on a quest for virtual adulation.

So this time round, I’ve decided to take a more passive approach. I am pledging $25 for every new 100 fans. The page just reached 200 (woohoo!) so I’ve now made another donation.

On a side note, if you are a couchsurfer and on Kiva, you may want to consider joining the Couchsurfing lending team.

Back in the early days of Couchsurfing, many of us envisioned that Couchsurfing would evolve into a social networking site for all the awesome people in the world – ie. people who engage in random acts of kindness and are actively socially and environmentally conscious. I thought CouchSurfing would evolve into something like

Turns out many people who join CouchSurfing are awesome, but lots are just cheap bastards who like to travel.

So, good thing we have niche “do-good” sites like Kiva.

Wait, I had a point. If you aren’t already a member of Kiva, you should consider joining. It’s only a minimum $25 contribution, of which Kiva doesn’t even take a cut. And if you really want, you can withdraw the money when the loan is repaid. The best part is it’s not a hand out, you are simply giving someone the opportunity to be entrepreneurial. It’s kinda like Farmville only more awesome.

I’ve made today’s loan to Fatima Beisheeva from Kyrgyzstan so that she can buy a cow. Sure why not? I would have probably blown that $25 on vodka Red Bulls anyway. My preferance is to loan to women just because I’m sure it’s harder for women in less developed countries. Also if women are successful at business, I bet the men will step up, and their children will grow up to see men and women as equals. So, there’s potentially a larger positive spillover effect.

More importantly, chicks will think I’m cool.

my Kiva profile

About Me

I'm a wanderer, couchsurfer, writer, illustrator, uncoordinated dancer, unwitting minimalist, party enthusiast, free hugger and now a crewman. Follow me @roymarvelous .................................................................................................................... Also, find out how to work on cruise ships. Or check out the new T-shirt & Card store.

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18 Comments for The Kiva Pledge & CouchSurfing Lending Team

The NVR Guys

Great idea Roy. We aren't on Facebook (shut up, I know), but I will do my part by spreading this post around like the creamy peanut butter that choosy moms choose. How about that?
My recent post Travelogue – avoiding “Memory” in Prague


    Thanks!! But why aren't you guys on Facebook? You don't need a personal account but I think a Facebook page for your blog is essential.


Hmmm, I'm on Couchsurfing… I love the whole idea behind Kiva and I want to belong to the awesome people of the pie. So I guess I'll hv to check out this whole CS lending team thingy. It's great that you're donating money to encourage FB fans *super thumbs up*
My recent post Bromo In Our Mind


    Yay. Btw, you don't have to join a lending team to be part of Kiva.


I recently heard of Kiva, it sounds really cool. I think lending to women is a good idea, I heard that in lots of places women can't get loans from banks just because of their gender. Also women will be more likely to spend the profit/benefit on their family or community. I guess I need to sign up now! 🙂


    It's definitely worth it 🙂

Cathy Sweeney

Love reading your posts, Roy and happy to be one of your Facebook fans. By the way, I also highly recommend Facebook to the NVRGuys!
My recent post The Cloisters- Medieval Manhattan


    Thanks Cathy! I'm happy to be your fan too 🙂


I like your approach Roy. It's true women have a harder time in developing countries. Also children- which is why charities or causes that help women and or children are my favorite. $25 can go a long way! Check out to if you want to collect funds for your own cause.

Zlatka Palkovicova

Thanks for the Kiva info, actually found it via some other your post. I do think it makes a positive influence and it is kinda fun to lend people when you hear at least some part of their story. I quiet like it and am in the process of building my own portfolio 🙂


Awesome! Thanks Laurel 🙂


Great idea! I hope you go broke! In a good way that is…

On a side note, maybe we should start a Facebook petition to get NVR Guys on Facebook…xD
My recent post Travel Photo of the Week — Hijacking Hotspot


    Count me in! Or even an unauthorized NVR guys fan page 😀


I can't believe I am just finding out about this now! This is amazing!! I am signing up RIGHT NOW!!!

also, your pie graph is wonderfully accurate. Sometimes I have to remind myself of what CS is really about, esp when all these wierdos are requesting my couch clearly cuz they are cheapos who haven't even read my profile.


    And fortunately, sometimes the cheapos find out how awesome the community is and become awesome themselves.


Great idea- we will definitely like it and spread the world to add to your goal! This is so fantastic!


    Thanks Jade 😀

Bribery With Purpose: For Children Who Wanna Do Stuff Good> Roy Marvelous – Cruise Ships & CouchSurfing. Work & Travel Around The World!

[…] I’m a bit late to the party. I was planning to donate $30 to them on my birthday, instead of giving it to Kiva. But wait, let’s make this a bit more […]