AUSTIN, Texas (Feb. 20, 2013) — Whole Planet Foundation kicks off its 2013 Prosperity Campaign today at Whole Foods Market® with the goal of raising $5.7 million for global poverty relief – enough funds to create nearly 36,000 microloans that will support more than 200,000 people with the chance for a better life.
Through March 31, shoppers can make a difference by participating in hundreds of fundraising opportunities at Whole Foods Market stores – from wine tastings and fashion shows to charity races – or by donating at store checkouts or online at wholeplanetfoundation.org.
This year, shoppers can also enter for a chance to win a trip to Morocco, courtesy of Intrepid Travel, to see the power of microcredit first-hand. On this five-day adventure for two, travelers will meet women who benefit from the foundation’s support, while they take in the sights, sounds and flavors of Morocco. For a chance to win, entrants must start an online fundraising campaign at: wholeplanetfoundation.org/get-involved/create-a-campaign and raise a loan to change lives before March 15.
“A loan as small as $200 can spark lifelong change for a poor entrepreneur, providing the opportunity for her to create or grow her own business and lift herself and her family out of poverty,” said Philip Sansone, president and executive director of Whole Planet Foundation. “This year, we’re honored to offer shoppers a chance to see just how deeply their fundraising dollars can impact a woman and her family abroad.”
Through grants to microfinance partners in the U.S. and 54 other countries, Whole Planet Foundation funds microloans in poor communities where Whole Foods Market sources products. To date, the foundation has committed more than $34 million and disbursed more than $24 million worldwide, supporting more than 1.5 million people around the world.
With no collateral, credit history or a contract required, microloans offer many low-income women their first chance to gain financial independence, launch their own businesses and start a new life. Prosperity from their food carts, at-home bakeries and tailor shops can help women provide healthier meals, better housing and an education for themselves and their children.
For more information about Whole Planet Foundation, fundraising opportunities or for testimonials from microcredit clients, visit wholeplanetfoundation.org.