“I really liked the way the site was constructed and level of engagement Kiva had with its lenders. I decided that it was the kind of organization that I’d like to spend more time with.”
City: Wayzata, MN
Team: Loan Stars
Time with Kiva: 1 year, 3 months
Outstanding contributions to Kiva: Lynn, always a conscientious editor, is also a great help on the Volunteer Forum. She is quick to answer questions from other volunteers and helps to create a sense of community on the forum.
Read on for a brief Q&A with this remarkable volunteer.
How did you find out about Kiva?
I spent the last part of my career, for 10 years, in digital marketing. From a digital perspective, Kiva was recognized as a best practice site because of its focus on mission, and the way it engages lenders in a very personal & authentic way. Several years ago, I received a Groupon for Kiva, so I started lending because I believe in its mission to address poverty.
Why did you choose to volunteer your time with Kiva?
I became an editor because, after being a lender, I wanted to be a part of the process inside the organization. I had done quite a bit of writing and editing in my advertising career, so it was right up my alley.
What is your favorite partner or region?
Lately, Honey Care Africa. The loans are well written, and I learned a lot about beekeeping and what makes an area good for honey production. I didn’t even know that there was a honey market in Africa!
Tell us about a memorable profile you have reviewed.
I really like the ones that make me smile. On the Forum, we even post a smile of the day/week sometimes. I recently edited one from UGAFODE for a man who makes local gin out of bananas. I thought, “I’d like to try that!”
Where is your favorite place in the world to travel?
I loved Italy. The history, beautiful churches, friendly people… It goes without saying that the food and wine are fabulous. I was amazed I could get along pretty well using my high school level Spanish. They were very kind and knew what I was trying to say.
Tell us an unusual or surprising fact about yourself.
My husband’s last name is the same as my first, so it’s a good thing I had no intention of changing my name or I could be confused with a Chinese panda!
Interested in volunteering with Kiva? Check out our opportunities at kiva.org/volunteer.
About the author
Jessica Beltman is an anthropology graduate student at San Francisco State University. Her undergraduate degree was in Visual Communications at the University of South Carolina with an emphasis on photojournalism. For her master’s thesis, she planned and implemented an applied research project among the Maasai people of Tanzania to understand problems facing Maasai women and facilitate communication between different Maasai groups across Sub-Saharan Africa. While there, she gained a better understanding of the effects of poverty on the individual family and would like to continue to contribute to poverty alleviation. Therefore, she is very excited to begin working at Kiva. In her free time, Jessica enjoys traveling, learning about different cultures, reading, and photography.