On Friday evening, a group of 18 Middle and Upper School GROW members attended a reception with Jessica Jackley (middle, pictured above), co-founder of Kiva, the world’s first person-to-person microlending website, later listening to her speak as part of University School’s Young Entrepreneur Institute’s Enspire 2015 conference. The Upper School branch of GROW has participated in microlending through Kiva for the past several years, and to date, they have issued 23 loans totaling $1,500. All of the loans issued by GROW support either female entrepreneurs or women pursuing higher education in the developing world. This past Wednesday, GROW engaged the entire Upper School in microfinance by issuing a live loan during morning meeting. All Upper School students had the opportunity to hear the story of three women seeking loans and vote on one to receive a loan from GROW.
HB student Archer Frodyma (’18) said of the experience:
It was great to see Kiva come to life through Jackley’s incredible story and amazing to hear about her small beginnings and how she was able to take a college major in poetry to later become an entrepreneur who has made a difference in the lives of millions. When we met her, she really stressed that we can all make a difference in a way that is meaningful to each of us. She was never interested in business, but when she had the idea for Kiva and realized that no one else could do it for her, she took the initiative to go to business school to make connections with people around the world. It was extremely inspiring to hear about social entrepreneurship and realize that business, education, and social activism can come together to create worldwide change.
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