So I’m a quiet member of Kiva, the microloan folks. When I began, I just loaned to sub-Saharan African women, due to my knowledge of the conditions there. But I joined a ‘group’ on Kiva called the ‘endangered beekeepers’, and now they email everyone when a lendee pops up who’s a beekeeper. We all jump on the loan and if you aren’t fast, that beekeeper is already funded.
It’s a fun way to beekeep without beekeeping. Helping a fellow beekeeper in Armenia, Tanzania, or Turkey get more hives and operating funds to expand. Over there, they are profitable without government subsidies, more than we can say in the US where we have an extra $4 artificially boosting our honey price thanks to the honey packers lobbyists.
I do get a kick out of seeing some of the pictures showing their apiaries. You don’t always see them, but it does make me smile. This woman is Naziko in Georgia, and her hive stands are built to last.
Kiva is easy, just join and you can loan as little as $25 per lendee. I’ve been kicking around $300 for over 5 years, never had a bad loan, but had lots of quiet smiles.