Relatively recently, a couple of my friends started a club at my school that deals with Microloans. Microloans are just what a they like, mini loans! For the club, we sell baskets handmade in Africa by fair-trade certified groups and then use that money to loan funds to groups of women in Malawi who are trying to start a business. Our club works on a larger scale, but there are ways that the every day person can make loans too!
Kiva is a large organization that helps thousands of people around the world! Here's how it works. Field partners (from Kiva) find entrepreneurs looking to be loaned money in poor countries throughout Africa and other continents. They upload the profile of the entrepreneur, and people like you and I can choose who to lend to. There's a more thorough explanation here, but basically, the money you loan will be repaid and can then be used to make another loan, donate, or can be put back into your paypal account! It's a really simple process, and you can donate as little as $25.
Kiva has loaned over $130,00,000 and helped people in over 196 countries!