Casey Wilson and Courtney McColgan met at Tsinghua University in Beijing, in 2006. Combining their passions, they started Wokai. “Wokai” in Chinese means “I start”. Wokai is a non-profit organization that gives microloans to impoverished entrepreneurs in rural China.
China has a population of over 1 billion people. And approximately 200 million of that population lives on less than $1 a day. China’s rapid economic growth has left it with one of the most severe income gaps in the developing world. The urban areas are marked by the same decadence as the developed world; skyscrapers, luxury cars, public services, and abundant employment opportunities. Unfortunately, that same boom has left rural incomes and living standards stagnant. Rural residents often lack the basic infrastructure necessary for development. During their time in China, Wilson and McColgan realized that they could do something. Wokai is similar to Kiva, harnessing the power of the internet to gain exposure and donors. Please watch Business World’s news clip about Wokai and visit their site.