October 25 is a very special day for Whole Planet Foundation. It is our birthday that marks the day in 2005 when we were seeded with money from a global five percent community giving day in Whole Foods Market stores companywide. We also use this day to give thanks for the amazing generosity of a special group of Whole Foods Market suppliers – the Poverty is Unncessary Fund® – who commit $25,000 each year to fund microlending programs around the globe. In 2013, the following partners have committed enough to provide nearly 150 impoverished families with loans and a chance to change their own lives. Now that’s something to celebrate!
One of the ways we are inviting you to participate this year is to watch The Change Series, an 8-part series that follows the experience of our friends Chris, Zach, Sean and Ryan living on $1 a day for eight weeks in rural Guatemala. Each episode focuses on a specific and pressing development topic that they faced including, clean water, nutrition, education, employment, finance and disasters. Extreme Budgeting is the episode that will launch on October 25, and you can watch it here.
To date, Whole Planet Foundation has disbursed more than $29 million and committed more than $37 million to microlending projects in 57 countries around the world, supporting more than 1.7 million people like Buon, pictured here, with a chance for a better life. Buon is a microcredit client of our Laos partner WFDF. She has been a client of WFDF since the new Whole Planet Foundation-supported branch opened in her area in July 2012. Her first and current loan cycle is in the amount of 2,000,000 Kip ($261 USD) which she has utilized to purchase materials for her mushrooms cultivation business.
We invite you to celebrate with us and take action to make a difference! Check your local Whole Foods Market store’s calendar for their Poverty is Unnecessary Day event, and you can also stop by and pick up an item, or two or more, from our generous supplier donors, to show your support for their efforts. You can also snap a photo of your celebration and tag it with #PIUDAY for your chance to win a gift basket full of Poverty is Unnecessary Fund supplier products.