Happy 2012 everyone. Now start changing the world, will you?

Since we kicked off our Kiva microfinance project "Change Starts Here" in November 2008, our Kiva Lending Team has already funded over 1,500 projects, for a total value of US$54,000. Check out our project score card on our Have Impact! blog.

In 2011, I had a wide range of sponsors for the blogs I manage. After deducting the running costs for my blogs, I want to invest the left-over funds in our microfinance project "Change Starts Here" . Seems like a good way to start 2012 off on a good footing!

So, from January 1 to 15, I will run a promotion campaign for AidJobs, my newest blog, while helping to boost our micro finance projects. How? Pretty simple:
  • For every comment left on this blogpost, I will donate US$5.
    Just leave your name and where you live. Add any wishes you have for a better world in 2012.
  • For every new Twitter follower on @AidJobs, I will donate US$5.
    (we're starting at 147 followers)
  • For every new "like" on our AidJobs Facebook page, I will donate US$5.
    (we're starting at 22 likes)
  • For every new Email subscription, I will donate US$5.
    (we're starting at 4 subscriptions)
Again, the end date is midnight January 15, and all funds go to our Kiva micro finance projects. A good way to start 2012, no?

Over the next weeks, I will publish updates on this blog post.

Happy New Year everyone!


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Looking for a job as an aidworker? Here is a good start!

Ever since I wrote the post on "How to become an aidworker", I get mail from people asking for advice. Most struggle with getting into "the system", which is indeed the hardest part: "getting through that solid iron gate".

Part of the problem is that people don't know where to look for vacancies. Job announcements in the aid and nonprofit sector are spread in many different places. I tried to change that, and built an aggregator. AidJobs collecting job vacancies in the international aid sector, the humanitarian and development field as well as in the nonprofit area.

The job offers range from part time volunteering to internships, consultancies, and staff employment. About half of the jobs are for local positions (mostly in the US and Europe), half are international  positions (mostly in Africa, Asia and South America).

To really get started, I also list offers for online volunteers: volunteering work you can do from your home, for a few hours per week - a great way to help out many nonprofits, to get additional experience, give something back to society, and also to get "a foot in the door" of the nonprofit world.

AidJobs also features a map, with the locations of the latest job offers.

You can follow the updates via @AidJobs on Twitter, and via the AidJobs Facebook page. I also publish a daily digest.

Since I started the site a week ago, 1,700 positions were collected, from development specialists in Haiti, to social media internships in New York, a human rights consultancy in Argentina and a camp manager in South Sudan.


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Teased bull frog eats finger

An African bull frog is trying to catch ants on an smartphone screen. Kinda funny. Is even more funny when he takes revenge..

Discovered via AllTop

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Where the hell is Matt?

This is really sweet. 

From his website:
Matt is a 35-year-old deadbeat from Connecticut who used to think that all he ever wanted to do in life was make and play videogames. Matt achieved this goal pretty early and enjoyed it for a while, but eventually realized there might be other stuff he was missing out on. In February of 2003, he quit his job in Brisbane, Australia and used the money he'd saved to wander around Asia until it ran out. He made this site so he could keep his family and friends updated about where he is.

A few months into his trip, a travel buddy gave Matt an idea. They were standing around taking pictures in Hanoi, and his friend said "Hey, why don't you stand over there and do that dance. I'll record it." He was referring to a particular dance Matt does. It's actually the only dance Matt does. He does it badly. Anyway, this turned out to be a very good idea.

A couple years later, someone found the video online and passed it to someone else, who passed it to someone else, and so on. Now Matt is quasi-famous as "That guy who dances on the internet. No, not that guy. The other one. No, not him either. I'll send you the link. It's funny."

The response to the first video brought Matt to the attention of the nice people at Stride gum. They asked Matt if he'd be interested in taking another trip around the world to make a new video. Matt asked if they'd be paying for it. They said yes. Matt thought this sounded like another very good idea.

In 2006, Matt took a 6 month trip through 39 countries on all 7 continents. In that time, he danced a great deal.

The second video made Matt even more quasi-famous. In fact, for a brief period in July, he was semi-famous.

Things settled down again, and then in 2007 Matt went back to Stride with another idea. He realized his bad dancing wasn't actually all that interesting, and that other people were much better at being bad at it. He showed them his inbox, which, as a result of his semi-famousness, was overflowing with emails from all over the planet. He told them he wanted to travel around the world one more time and invite the people who'd written him to come out and dance too.
The Stride people thought that sounded like yet another very good idea, so they let him do it.

And he did. And now it's done. And he hopes you like it.

Thanks for the link, Jan!

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