California Life’s Heather Dawson got the chance to interview vibrant giver and executive director of The Greater Contribution, Karon Wright.
The Greater Contribution is a local organization that helps families work their way out of poverty. The organization is celebrating its 13th Anniversary of empowering impoverished women through the power of over 15,000 microloans.
Wright says microloans, are tiny little loans that enable people to start small businesses, which then enable them to work themselves out of poverty. She then quotes, “Give a man a fish, you’ll feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish, and you’ve fed him for a lifetime.”
She was inspired by a book by Jeffrey Sachs entitled The End of Poverty: Economic Possibilities for Our Time. A few facts from the book really struck her: First, 22,000 people a day die from poverty worldwide. Second, that poverty can be fought.
Wright and her partners had no background in issues related to poverty, like clean drinking water or fighting HIV. So they did a lot of research and worked for a year with a great humanitarian organization, and received plenty of valuable training. When the time came to form their own organization, The Greater Contribution, they partnered with an agency that already had its feet on the ground in impoverished areas around the world. This allowed them to focus on their own efforts here in the U.S. on raising awareness and funds.
VibrantNation.com honored Karon Wright as their first woman honorary. Vibrant Nation connects women over 50, who we know statistically who have the energy, time, and commitment to give back.
One of the biggest problems Wright says the organization faces is that poverty is a silent killer. She compared the worldwide reaction when a tsunami hits and people come to the rescue with food, money, and aid, to the fact that every single day about 25,000 children are dying from poverty.
Part of The Greater Contribution’s mission is to raise awareness and let people know that poverty is a silent killer.
Here are ways to help:
- Make a donation to the Greater Contribution. A single $50 donation can make an enormous difference through the power of micro-loans. Because micro-loans are repaid and re-loaned multiple times a year, your single $50 donation will help many women and their families in the course of a single year.
- Start a change club in a local school. This is a new program we just started to teach schoolchildren about poverty. We provide change banks and students bring in change to donate. The amount collected gets divided 50-50. Half funds micro-loans through The Greater Contribution, and half stays in the school to spend on books or supplies. The idea is that small change creates a big change and that children can help children.
- Start a giving circle. If you belong to a book club, a golf group, or a theater group, think about doing a small, easy fundraiser to fund individual micro-loans or to sponsor an entire village bank. Our first village bank in Malawi is benefiting 1,500 people in the first year.
Please go to GreaterContribution.org to make a difference in someone else’s life!