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Las Gemelas Group
In this Group: Paulina , Candida Dominga , Juana Socorro , Isabela , Monica Anarrita , Juana , Veronica Rosalia , Maria
San Juan La Laguna in the department of Solola is a pretty, quiet Mayan town located on the shores of beautiful Lake Atitlan in the highlands of Guatemala. It is a town well known for its traditional natural dye techniques and striking textiles. It is here that the Friendship Bridge Trust Bank “Las Gemelas” or “The Twins” was just formed. The eight women in the group are just beginning their first loan cycle with Friendship Bridge. They have a variety of businesses including the sale of clothing and textiles, corn and seafood. One of them owns a Moto taxi called a “tuk tuk” which is a common form of transportation in many towns in Guatemala. The average age of the women is 33 years.

Paulina is a 23-year-old married woman who belongs to “Las Gemelas”. She has twin daughters and it is in their honor that the Trust Bank is called “Las Gemelas”. As her husband fishes every day, Paula sells seafood and is requesting a loan which she will use to expand her business. She plans to buy fishing gear including hooks, nylon fishing line, baskets, and other materials. Paulina tells us that the business is giving the family a pretty good income and also gives her the opportunity to continue with her education. She goes to school at night and is currently in the 9th grade. She is a great example that it is never too late to learn and improve oneself. She gets up early each morning to take care of her husband and their daughters, then goes to the market to sell seafood and then attends school at night.

The ladies of the Trust Bank enjoy getting together at their monthly meetings. During these meetings, a Friendship Bridge Loan Officer provides educational trainings on various subjects. The women are anxious to learn about topics like women’s health and hygiene, identity and leadership, and budgeting and business administration.

These dynamic women want to take the opportunity to express their gratitude to KIVA investors from all parts of the world who believe in them and their goals. The combination of small loans education and educational trainings is a pathway for the women to empower themselves and leave poverty behind. They will face a brighter future and raise their standard of living, benefiting themselves, their families and their community of San Juan La Laguna.

Additional Information

About Friendship Bridge

This loan is administered by Friendship Bridge (FB), a nonprofit, nongovernmental organization that empowers thousands of impoverished Guatemalan women through its Microcredit Plus program. The program combines small loans averaging US$350 for four-to-twelve month loan terms with non-formal, participatory education.

As FB clients, women start, expand, or diversify their businesses and learn practical lessons on topics including business, health, and self-esteem. FB’s clients borrow as a group, forming Trust Banks (groups of 7-25 women who serve as co-guarantors of the loan and act as a self-regulating support network).

This is a Group Loan

In a group loan, each member of the group receives an individual loan but is part of a larger group of individuals. The group is there to provide support to the members and to provide a system of peer pressure, but groups may or may not be formally bound by a group guarantee. In cases where there is a group guarantee, members of the group are responsible for paying back the loans of their fellow group members in the case of delinquency or default.

Kiva's Field Partners typically feature one borrower from a group. The loan description, sector, and other attributes for a group loan profile are determined by the featured borrower's loan. The other members of the group are not required to use their loans for the same purpose.

About Guatemala

  • $5,300
    Average annual income
  • 128
    View loans »
    Guatemala Loans Fundraising
  • $10,890,300
    Funds lent in using Kiva
  • 7.7
    Guatemala Quetzales (GTQ) = $1 USD

Success!! The loan was 100% repaid

A portion of Las Gemelas Group's $2,275 loan helped a member to buy fishing gear including hooks, nylon fishing line, baskets.
100% repaid
Repayment Term
10 months (Additional Information)
Repayment Schedule
Mar 13, 2014
Mar 22, 2014
Currency Exchange Loss:
Dec 17, 2014