Travel the world and make a difference
Kiva has a mission to connect people through lending to alleviate poverty, and Kiva fellows live and breathe that purpose every day. Since 2007, fellows have been Kiva’s eyes and ears in the field, creating a crucial link between borrowers and lenders and working hands-on to grow Kiva’s impact.
A Kiva fellowship allows you to immerse yourself in the culture and language of your host country or region for 6 months, while applying your skills in new ways with one or more of our 300 Field Partners. You’ll gain a behind-the-scenes understanding of microfinance and social enterprise, while meeting inspiring people working to improve financial access around the world. Learn more about the Kiva Fellows Program experience on the Kiva Fellows Blog.
Where will you serve?
Fellows are matched with one or more Kiva Field Partners in 60+ countries throughout the developing world. Field Partners are local microfinance institutions, social enterprises and other organizations that facilitate Kiva loans, making it possible for Kiva to have the reach we do – 2 million borrowers and counting.
Kiva’s Partnerships team requests fellows based on the current needs of the partners in each region where Kiva works. Most fellows will be placed with multiple field partners in several countries throughout the duration of their fellowship. Kiva cares about the safety and security of all fellows, and uses travel advisories provided by trusted sources including the State Departments of the U.S., U.K., and Canada to inform security-related decisions during the placement process.
We recommend reading through the job descriptions carefully and applying to a position that you feel you’re a good fit for. Some locations require candidates to have high proficiency or fluency in a second language, and the specific workplan for a Field Partner may also require certain skills.
Within the positions that are English-speaking, you’ll have a chance to indicate your preference to serve in a certain region. For all candidates, the Kiva Fellows Program staff may feel you’re a better fit for a different role in a different region, so country/region flexibility is highly valued throughout the application process.
Hands-on field experience
All fellows play a critical role in supporting operations and monitoring Kiva’s Field Partners, including meeting with borrowers, documenting Kiva processes, conducting trainings, and working with field staff to improve efficiency. No two fellowships are the same, and a fellow’s workplan may evolve once in the field based on shifting priorities or changes to the portfolio.
Some fellows may also work on design and management of partners’ credit programs, the risk management and strategy development of partners, or Kiva’s impact measurement efforts. Other examples of deliverables include helping to find and develop new partners, blogging from the field, and sharing photo and video content that helps tell the story of Kiva’s impact.
Mark your calendar
Kiva is now hiring for our January - July 2017 fellowship class starting in mid January 2017. These are important dates for the next class of Kiva fellows:
The Kiva fellowship is a full-time, 6-month program, so interested applicants must be able and willing to commit to the full time period.
Steps for applying
We encourage you to apply for any open position that aligns well with your skills, including language requirements, but we may consider you for another position if we think there is a great match.
- Step 1: Apply
- Please apply by submitting your application. Be sure to note any languages you speak, along with your proficiency in those languages, on your resume.
- By October 9, 2016
- Step 2: Alumni interview and language assessment
- If your application is accepted into the next round, you will be contacted via email to schedule a Skype interview with an alum of the program. If you applied for a position that requires proficiency in another language there will also be a language assessment at this stage.
- By November 4, 2016
- Step 3: Staff interview(s)
- Successful candidates will be invited to a second round Skype interview with Kiva Fellows Program staff, and possibly a third round interview with a partnerships team staff member.
- By December 9, 2016
- Step 4: Offer
- Taking all interviews into consideration, we will make offers based on the candidates’ best fit for the available roles. We consider professional skills, language skills, travel experience and personality fit.
- By December 16, 2016
Due to the Fellowship Program's competitive nature, we recommend that you submit your application as soon as possible. We receive a large number of applications, so are only able to respond to people who will be moving forward in the process. Please note, if you are invited to an interview and are located in the San Francisco Bay Area, we will still ask to speak with you via Skype.
Get to know our current fellows and alumni
Kiva fellows come from a wide range of backgrounds and have gone on to work in many different sectors all over the world at companies and organizations like Apple, Grameen America, Save the Children, IDEO.org, Box, Oliver Wyman and USAID. Learn more about our talented fellows here.