Posts with Category Giving Back

A year of giving: My #ten4tues project

Sometimes my travel recollections are less memories and more hauntings. I’m haunted by a legless beggar in Nepal who chased me around a stupa swinging wildly at my legs with a stick. I’m haunted by the smile of an orphan in Guatemala. I’m haunted by the smell of a dump in Cambodia.

I never know what will trigger a travel haunting. The other day I was speaking at a high school in San Francisco and another one surfaced.

I was in the village of Matlab in Bangladesh. My translator, Dalton, was giving me a tour of the village when a serious looking man approached us. He grabbed me by the arm and led us through the worn dirt paths around rice paddies and ponds until we stood in a…

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Be a small part of microfinance

I lent $25 to a businesswoman who runs a food stand in Cambodia through Kiva.org.  At least I thought I did.

As it turns out, the money didn’t go directly to Mao Yan whose grown children work in garment factories.  Yesterday I learned this in a column by Ron Lieber in the NY Times:

KIVA When you sign up to be a lender at Kiva, your money does not go directly to the entrepreneurs whose requests appear on the Web site. Instead, a microfinance institution administers the actual loan.

Often, these Kiva partners engage in what a Kiva founder, Matt Flannery, refers to as “pre-disbursals.” In plain English, that means that borrowers get their loans before their appeals appear on Kiva’s…

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I don't say this often…

Watch Oprah today.

Why?

This is why…

I watched that video last night with my 9-month-old girl on my lap and nearly started crying.  I’m such a sap….

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Why I'm running the NYC marathon and how you can help

Annie gave me The Look that I’ve become all too familiar with…

You’re doing what?

I saw it after college when I moved to Key West. I saw it when I told her about my plan to go to Bangladesh because my underwear was made there.

She had just returned from a full day of work and was smartly clad in her office attire. I was still in my writer’s uniform: shorts, ratty T-shirt, and barefoot.  I looked like her jobless, thirty-something, live-in mooch.

“I’ve committed to running the NYC marathon and raising $3,000…”

(insert The Look)

“…for cancer.”

The look softened.

Annie knows cancer.  She works at a radiation treatment center.  She takes pride in smiling at patients and their families.  Annie and her co-workers become part of the patients’ daily routine.

The treated are cared for….

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