Luz is from Urcos, a small community that is located in the Sacred Valley of the Incas, 50 minutes away from the city of Cusco. She is 24 years old and sells bread in the Plaza de Armas, the main square in Urcos. She makes the bread every day at home, starting at 3 AM. She makes all types of bread, such as chuta (a typical Cusco specialty), and sells it for 5 soles a bag. On a typical day she can sell a quintal of bread, which is about 46 kg.
Luz will use the loan to purchase sugar, butter, flour and other ingredients. Her goal is to buy a bread-making machine instead of having to use her oven. She is a member of a 44-person lending group with Asociación Arariwa that receives financial training from a loan officer, and also participates in the group savings account.
About Asociación Arariwa
Asociación Arariwa is a large non-governmental organization that started offering microcredit in 1994 to improve the quality of life, skills and equity of the population in the rural Cusco region of Peru. Arariwa serves the southern Andean provinces of Peru, and is distinguished by its efforts to reach the very poor, who often live in isolated rural areas. Arariwa fosters village banking, supports savings accounts, promotes access to education, and empowers women entrepreneurs (who make up 78% of its borrowers).