Valentin, age 55, is a new cacao member of MMC who lives in the beautiful village of San Jose. The village is in a rural area with no access to electricity. Valentin, together with his wife Herminia, raised ten children, three of whom are still living with them. His wife enjoys doing crafts and tending to the children.
Valentin was inspired to plant cacao from seed to seedling with assistance given from Maya Mountain Cacao. A group of new farmers were introduced and trained to start their own cacao nurseries and graft seedlings. They also cultivate different types of crops, such as corn, beans, and rice. Transplanting these seedlings is possible, but due to other farm work, Valentin sees the need for financial assistance.
Valentin is requesting this loan to hire workers to assist him in brushing and planting 1,000 new cacao seedlings. He hopes to expand his business and plant more cacao, as he see other farmers receiving financial benefits and household use for the product.
About Maya Mountain Cacao
Maya Mountain Cacao (MMC) is a for-profit social enterprise that sources premium cacao beans from smallholder farmers in Belize. Founded in 2010, it generates income for marginalized farmers while promoting sustainable agricultural practices in the southern part of the country.
These cacao farmers use Kiva credit to invest in farm maintenance, improvement and expansion. For example, they might hire workers to help with the harvest or buy inputs such as better tools and seedlings.