Hi there tout la gang,

We don't have much to say about research in practice at the Café right now

but we are talking policy and practice over here now: Literacy Enquirers.

Monday, December 8, 2008

'tis the season

For those who give gifts at this time of year, here are a couple of websites that can help answer the questions, "What do I get for Aunt Alice?" and, "What do I do with this strange trinket from Aunt Alice?"

At Kiva.org you can join a community of lenders (people from countries with relatively robust economies) that supports a community of entrepreneurs (people from countries with less robust economies). Kiva gift certificates allow your friends and family to browse profiles of entrepreneurs looking for financial support, and choose someone to lend to. Kiva collects the funds and then passes them along to a microfinance partners who distribute the funds to the entrepreneur. Over time, the entrepreneur repays the loan. Repayment and other updates are posted on Kiva and emailed to lenders who wish to receive them. When lenders get their money back, they can re-lend to another entrepreneur, donate their funds to Kiva (to cover operational expenses), or withdraw their funds.

DreamBank.org is a Canadian gift registry website where you can post your dream gift - something special that you'd like friends and family to contribute to for your birthday and holidays, instead of giving you "stuff" that you may not need or really want. DreamBank provides a way for your friends and family to help you do, or have something special. DreamBank uses PayPal to process dream funds but has worked out the best possible fee schedule for users and promises to continue to enhance these discounts as they grow. Contributors pay $2.25 Canadian transaction fee on each contribution and Dreamers pay a 2.5% cash-in fee (on dream fund total). DreamBank gives 10% of all net transaction revenue to a group of selected charities. Shopping at DreamBank can help the planet by reducing the waste caused by packaging, manufacturing and transportation.

These ideas and more from this post @ publicbroadcasting.ca.

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