Jewelie is an expert baker, with over 13 years of experience in the trade. In particular, everyone loves her gluten-free Brazilian cheese bread (“pao de quijo”), which she learned to make as a high school exchange student in Brazil. After years of urging from friends and family, Jewelie finally decided to start a business to sell her famous bread. To build a strong foundation for the new enterprise, Jewelie enrolled in a six-week business planning program at Mercy Corps Northwest in Portland, Oregon.
As laid out in the business plan that she developed with the help of her Mercy Corps trainer, Jewelie plans to sell the bread frozen to both wholesale and retail customers. In the meantime, she has been diligently building her network and generating buzz around the product. With a commercial lease, licenses, and a strong network in place, Jewelie now needs funds to purchase equipment (e.g., mixer, freezers, etc.), packaging, and a computer. Because its loan fund was fully deployed, Mercy Corps referred Jewelie to ACCION USA, where she was approved for a $9,000 loan.
We at ACCION USA look forward to watching her business grow (not to mention to sample her bread!).
About U.S. Microfinance and ACCION USA:
Have you ever thought about how the cute new café on your corner or the salon you frequent every month got the financial resources to start their business? Chances are, they drummed up support from their friends and family, dipped into their personal savings, used a high-interest credit card, or all of the above. An estimated ten million small businesses in the U.S. face difficulty obtaining loans from traditional banks, even prior to the current “credit crisis”. Microfinance institutions, like ACCION USA, support these “unbanked” small businesses by giving them access to fairly-priced capital and business education.
Small businesses also help stabilize low- to moderate-income neighborhoods and rebuild our economy through income growth and job creation. Self-employment provides workers with a way to increase their incomes, support their families, and strengthen their communities. As unemployment rises in the U.S., more and more people are turning to self-employment and start-up enterprises as a way to take control of their economic futures and provide employment opportunities in their communities. The need for support of small businesses in the U.S. is great, and it is one that ACCION USA has been striving to meet since 1991.
Important Information About This Loan
Kiva realizes that access to credit is a challenge for entrepreneurs everywhere. Kiva started out as a website focused on developing-world entrepreneurs. In June 2009, Kiva began experimenting with allowing entrepreneurs in the United States to raise money on its website. If this is something you support, please feel free to fund this loan. If you have questions, including how an entrepreneur in your neighborhood might get a loan, please visit our Help Center and click on "Loans in the United States."