Patricia is a devoted single mother and teacher by day, with dreams of opening her own bakery to better the life of her family. For her, just a $5,000 loan for machinery would kick-start her business and provide her with a second source of income. I’m proud to say that through the Matter to a Million program, over 100 employees joined forces to help Patricia fulfil her dreams.
Matter to a Million is a partnership between the Hewlett Packard Enterprise Foundation and non-profit, micro-lending platform, Kiva. The five-year global initiative has enabled thousands of HPE employees to help hard-working, low-income entrepreneurs around the world by providing them with a $25 microfinance loan credit. The loans made through Kiva help farmers, salespeople, fishers, and other business owners grow their ventures and bring prosperity to their local communities. While there is no silver bullet to alleviating poverty, Kiva believes that expanding access to fair and affordable credit can open doors, and gives people an opportunity to change their lives for the better. I am thrilled to announce that this week, Kiva is on the verge of reaching $1 billion in life-changing microloans. We are humbled to be one small part of this milestone.
Thousands of HPE employees like me are huge believers in Kiva and the Matter to a Million program as a simple, inspiring way to provide financial access to the underserved. In fact, more than 52% of employees have participated since the program first launched in 2014. This year, HPE employees chose to support a variety of entrepreneurs—whether helping Jose in El Salvador grow his tire repair business, or providing Rosa from the Dominican Republic the student loans she needs to become a doctor. In just two weeks, over $1 million in loans were made through our spring campaign, totaling more than $14.5 million since the program first launched three years ago.
Together, Kiva and HPE are proving that small acts of generosity can fuel a movement of opportunity for all. With as little as $25, we can each invest in someone’s dreams. I am more impassioned than ever to see the difference our employees can make as Matter to a Million continues to gain momentum.