Nov 15, 2022

Startup Junkie Foundation Awarded Grant to Continue Facilitating NWA Kiva Hub, Offering No-Interest, No-Fee Microloans to Small Businesses

A near half-million dollar grant from the Walton Family Foundation extends the program for entrepreneurs and small business owners an additional three years

Startup Junkie Foundation has been awarded another three-year grant from the Walton Family Foundation to continue facilitating the Northwest Arkansas Kiva Hub. The $470,000 grant will allow the foundation to assist entrepreneurs and small business owners access much needed capital via Kiva’s community-backed microloans through the fall of 2025.  

In addition, the Walton Family Foundation will continue to provide dollar-for-dollar matching of loan funds for every new, Kiva-approved small business borrower located in Washington and Benton counties. 

“Since the launch of the NWA Kiva Hub, we have assisted 80 local borrowers in obtaining crowdfunded loans ranging from $1,000 to $15,000,” said Martha Londagin, NWA Kiva Hub capital access manager. “Of those, 76 have been borrowers who identify as a person of color, minority or woman business owner, with 34 percent of them identifying as being a Black-owned business.”

Startup Junkie Foundation launched the state’s first official Kiva Hub in Northwest Arkansas in December of 2019. The hub serves as a local resource center by which entrepreneurs and small business owners can access the Kiva platform to obtain no-fee, no-interest microloans of up to $15,000 from a community of local and national lenders. 

“We have already seen the impact this program can have on the 80 NWA small business owners assisted since 2019,” said Londagin. “These are truly loans that change lives, change families, and change communities. It is not just a slogan; I see lives changed every month by these loans. I believe we can all make a difference here with the Kiva program by encouraging and growing a more diverse business owner community in Northwest Arkansas.”

The repayment rate for Kiva loans is approximately 78 percent across the U.S. Through the NWA Kiva Hub, Startup Junkie Foundation provides consulting and technical assistance to borrowers and small business owners, including assistance with the Kiva online application process, working step-by-step to increase the likelihood of approval. While borrowers can seek loan approval through Kiva without going through the Hub, having a local partner like the Startup Junkie Foundation and a Kiva Capital Access Manager increases the likelihood of success for local entrepreneurs and business owners.

Loans through the Kiva platform require five to 40 (depending upon the loan amount approved by Kiva) initial, private loans of as little as $25 from customers, friends or family before launching to the national community of over two million Kiva lenders. These private local loans serve as “community collateral” for the borrower, replacing traditional requirements for personal and business property pledges. The process requires no minimum credit score, no collateral pledges, no official financial statements, nor U.S. citizenship documentation to apply. All Kiva lenders are repaid the loans from the borrower via the Kiva repayment system or the lender’s PayPal account. 

Kiva is a non-profit that expands access to capital for entrepreneurs around the world. After launching in Uganda in 2005, Kiva expanded its lending to the United States in 2009. Two years later, the US Kiva Hubs program launched, which aims to expand the Kiva model, city by city, to financially excluded and socially impactful entrepreneurs in cities throughout America. 

With the help of the Walton Family Foundation, Startup Junkie Foundation established a Kiva Hub in Northwest Arkansas in 2019 for small business loans to empower area entrepreneurs. The NWA Kiva Hub is one of over 40 hubs located throughout the United States and Puerto Rico. 

Small business owners interested in applying for a crowdfunded Kiva loan can contact Martha Londagin at or (479) 276-7096 for no-cost assistance with the online application process. 

Each business that applies must be able to provide some basic business proof documents, such as a business bank account statement, business license, LLC incorporation documents, or a county DBA certificate copy for a sole proprietor, unincorporated business. 


About Kiva: Kiva is a 501(c)3 U.S. nonprofit fueled by passionate people. Founded in 2005, and based in San Francisco, with offices in Bangkok, Nairobi, and Portland, and staff around the globe.

About Startup Junkie Foundation: Startup Junkie Foundation is a team of passionate people working every day to help entrepreneurs in Northwest Arkansas thrive. We exist to educate, inspire, and support entrepreneurs and innovators through no-cost, one-on-one consulting; events, workshops, and programs; and access to capital and talent.


Martha Londagin