How the Internet helped Altanchimeg from Mongolia get a loan.

Altanchimeg Dash is 33 years old and lives in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia. Since 2003, with the help of her husband, Altanchimeg has been operating a meat retailing business at a rented stall in Han Talst, one of the biggest markets in her town. She specialises in selling mutton and beef. She has worked hard to grow her business and now her daily sales are approximately 400,000 MNT (aprox A$350).

Altanchimeg requested a 3,000,000 MNT (aprox A$2,500) loan in August 2010 in order to complete her house, which show hopes to one day develop into her own meat retailing store.

As of today (late Jan 2011) the loan is 16% repaid.

Altanchimeg’s is one of the many dreams being brought to life by Kiva, a non-profit online micro-lending site based in San Francisco, USA. Kiva enables people from all over the world to browse the stories and business plans of entrepreneurs in countries less fortunate than their own and choose to lend money to a specific person in increments a

s small as $25.

Kiva works with field partners on the ground to find, identify and fund legitimate business ventures based on three core beliefs:



  • People are by nature generous, and will help others if given the opportunity to do so in a transparent, accountable way.
  • The poor are highly motivated and can be very successful when given an opportunity.
  • By connecting people we can create relationships beyond financial transactions, and build a global community expressing support and encouragement of one another.

Kiva is the type of organisation that has grown out of the globalisation of communications that the internet has brought. 20 years ago an organisation such as this simply could not have existed. It has taken advantage of the massive reach that can be achieved on the internet can have with out the need for the expensive mass marketing campaigns that became so popular in the 80s and 90s. Now anyone with a good idea and some hustle can reach enough people to change the world.

I encourage you all the check out kiva at The loans start at $25 and they really are loans. You get to watch the progress as your chosen recipient builds their business and repays their loan. Then you have the choice to withdraw your money or roll it over into another loan


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Matt Edwards

Matt is a past owner of AussieTheatre, working as digital director from 2011 to 2019. He is also a performer, most recently appeared in the Australian tour of Mamma Mia! and previously in the Australian/NZ tour of CATS and Enda Markey's acclaimed production of Blood Brothers. As well as performing Matt keeps himself busy in the digital side of the arts working with web design agency Emptyhead Digital

Matt Edwards

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