Can WeTrust Disrupt Payday Loans? Part 3. Friends in Need

Leon Di, Product Marketing @ WeTrust

This is Part 3 of a series of articles describing an experimental Trusted Lending Circle in East San Jose utilizing concepts from the WeTrust Platform.For the introduction in Part 1, click here.

For Part 2, click here.

The members of the Trusted Lending Circle gathered after a light workout in the boxing gym for the second payout. Sheila, the recipient of last week’s pot, had registered for her nursing exam and was studying hard for it — she would take the exam this Thursday. We all wished her good luck!

This time around, everyone seemed much more comfortable with the concept, and two members were very forward in stating what they needed the money for. Both Khoi and Charlie had pressing needs: Khoi to fix an alternator on his beat up old Toyota Camry, which he needed to get to work and to class, and Charlie to help an uncle pay for an upcoming surgery for a life threatening condition that his insurance didn’t fully cover due to the repeal of the Affordable Care Act.

Since Khoi and Charlie were good friends and classmates at the local community college, they both insisted that the other person should receive the week’s payout. A Trusted Lending Circle is founded around trust, and I was very impressed by the way these two friends revealed their trustworthy natures, with neither person pressing to take the funds. Eventually, Andrew the foreperson moved that the decision should come down to a blind vote. We ended up voting 5–2 to help Charlie with the funds for his uncle’s surgery, mostly because it seemed like Khoi’s car could sputter on for another week or two. We also made a note that Khoi should receive the pot during the next week, assuming no other life threatening events occurred.

Charlie was very moved after receiving the funds. He mentioned to me that in the past, he had resorted to using pay day loans when facing situations like this, and had to spend months paying off the interest on those pay day loans. At one point, he had to borrow money from his uncle to pay off his pay day loan, a loan that he had yet to repay. Not only was he happy to help his uncle, but he resolved that this time around, he would not leave any more unpaid “debts”, and would dutifully contribute to the next few weeks’ Trusted Lending Circle. It was great hearing this from Charlie, and it certainly made me happy to see the Trusted Lending Circle was having positive benefits already.

To learn more about how blockchain can enable lending groups like the Trusted Lending Circle described here, follow the WeTrust blog and check out!