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Luz De Vida Group
In this Group: Juana , Rosario , Concepcion , Magdalena , Maria , Maria , Magdalena , Andrea , Rosa , Antonia , Micaela Elizabeth
Santiago Atitlán lies on an inlet between the volcanoes of Tolimán and San Pedro on the shores of beautiful Lake Atitlán in Guatemala. It is the largest of the communities on the lake with great natural beauty, cultural riches and a strong indigenous identity. The population is around 46,000 and those who live here are called “Atitecos”. The vast majority are Tz'utujil Maya, and both men and women dress in the colorful and traditional manner.

The Friendship Bridge Trust Bank, “Luz de Vida” or “Light of Life”, is located here and is made up of eleven women. As the town is a magnet for tourism, artesians including most of the ladies in the Trust Bank create and offer all kinds of traditional crafts like beaded items and textile treasures. This is the first loan cycle for the eleven women and they are most excited and anxious to add capital to their small businesses.

The President of the Trust Bank is 32-year-old Rosa who attended school until the 4th grade. She is very motivated and takes her job seriously. She is a textile artist and creates beautifully adorned traditional belts called “fajas” that are embelished with beads and other materials. Rosa works out of her home and her children assist her so it becomes a family affair. She is requesting a loan to purchase beads by the kilo in order to create new and unique designs with the goal of increasing sales. The motivation of this dedicated woman is to be able to take care of the needs of her family, including the education of her five school-age children.

Rosa speaks for the ten women of the Trust Bank when she emphasizes the importance of the educational components of the monthly meetings, presented by a Friendship Bridge Loan Officer. The ladies want to be successful in their small businesses and so they are eager to learn how to come up with a successful business plan and budget. They want to learn about customer service. In addition, they are anxious to learn how to empower themselves with knowledge about self-esteem and women’s rights. The members of the Trust Bank want to steer their children into a successful future and so they are happy to learn how to get them ready for school and how to support them with healthy nutritious meals and good hygienic practices.

Thank you, KIVA investors, for funding the loans for the “Luz de Vida” Trust Bank. Each of you is a strong beam of light in the lives of these women! You can look forward to reading about their progress in a future report.

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
  • 104
    View loans »
    Guatemala Loans Fundraising
  • $10,349,100
    Funds lent in using Kiva
  • 7.8
    Guatemala Quetzales (GTQ) = $1 USD

Success!! The loan was 100% repaid

A portion of Luz De Vida Group's $5,375 loan helped a member to purchase beads by the kilo and create new and unique designs.
100% repaid
Repayment Term
13 months (Additional Information)
Repayment Schedule
Jun 10, 2014
Jun 18, 2014
Currency Exchange Loss:
Jun 17, 2015