Since 2007, Kiva has offered over 350 individuals a rare opportunity to witness firsthand the realities of microfinance through the Kiva Fellows Program. Applicants chosen for the program serve as Kiva’s eyes and ears on the ground, working directly with our microfinance institution (MFI) field partners in over 50 countries around the globe. The Kiva Fellow is an unpaid, volunteer position designed to increase Kiva’s impact and to offer participants a unique insider experience.
Core responsibilities of a Kiva Fellow:
- Work closely with local staff to maximize the host MFI’s partnership with Kiva
- Transfer skills to MFI staff on Kiva processes, policies and best practices
- Observe, learn and document the MFI’s operations and its use of the Kiva platform, making recommendations as appropriate
- Assist the host MFI to regularly collect and post borrower profiles for funding onto the Kiva website
- Facilitate connections between Kiva borrowers and lenders
- Interview Kiva borrowers to assess loan impact, verify data, and gather information for journal updates
- Develop innovative ways to facilitate connections via creative journaling, photographs, YouTube video and other means
- Write a blog entry every two weeks on the Kiva Fellows Blog
- Support Kiva’s product, marketing and organizational development
- Provide updates and feedback through field reports and a final end-of-fellowship report
- Utilize individual skill sets to complete special projects for Kiva as appropriate
Desired skills and experience:
- Overseas experience (preferably in developing countries)
- High degree of flexibility, self-motivation and problem solving ability
- Cultural fluency and general adaptability
- Backgrounds in economics, finance, consulting and international development
- Familiarity and comfort with various web applications
- Dedication to working in the field with a microfinance institution
- Ability and commitment to fund the experience
- Minimum 4-month commitment
- Enthusiasm for Kiva!
- Fluency or advanced communication ability in Arabic, French, Khmer, Mongolian, Pashto, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Swahili, Tagalog/Cebuano, and Vietnamese are highly preferred or required for many positions. English-only speakers are encouraged to apply to our diverse Anglophone portfolio.
Where fellows serve
Kiva currently has active partnerships with over 130 microfinance institutions in 50+ countries. Fellowship placements may occur at any of these locations, but availability is dependent upon partner need and the ability of a fellow to successfully complete assigned tasks. As such, individuals that express high degrees of geographic flexibility are more likely to be selected for a placement.
All individuals who successfully complete their fellowships are highly valued members of the Kiva family and will join the dynamic network of 350+ Kiva Fellow Alumni who continue to make change around the world.