I was watching Frontline the other night and came across an amazing non profit they were profiling named Kiva. Kiva lets you connect with and loan money to unique small businesses in the developing world. By choosing a business on Kiva.org, you can "sponsor a business" and help the world's working poor make great strides towards economic independence. Throughout the course of the loan (usually 6-12 months), you can receive email journal updates from the business you've sponsored. As loans are repaid, you get your loan money back.
I'm partial to Bolivia, register then login and do a search for "Bolivia" and give a little to someone just trying to become self sustainable. The best part is when you get paid back you can just loan it to another person in need.
Banks sometimes charge 30% for loans and loan sharks charge 200-300% interest, Kiva charges nothing, they are nothing short of amazing. Make sure to check them out.