Total loan: $10,000
Gurabo, PR, Puerto Rico / Retail
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A loan helped to open a second and larger brick and mortar store with storage capacity and collection center for donations, upcycling and recycling textiles.
I grew up in a little town in Mayaguez, Puerto Rico, in a big family of 37 cousins, where family values and togetherness were a priority. My grandpa owned the local supermarket and it was common to see him helping families in need and sharing everything they had. His example and those great memories helped to shape the person I am today. I studied Business Administration at the University of Puerto Rico, with a Major in Finance and a Minor in Accounting, went to Virginia Tech as an exchange student and finished a Master’s Degree in Finance from the Interamerican University of PR. I graduated in 2017 from the Caguas Compite Entrepreneurial Program, where I developed the Boutique’s business structure including social responsibility. For 12 years, I had my home-based skincare, makeup and spa products business, leading an average of 200 people and earning Sales and Recruiting recognitions. In 2016 the idea of the business came to mind when I dreamed of a little boutique with fine second-hand clothes where clients were amazed by the quality, the brands, and the prices. My goal is to continue educating people to use second-hand clothes while also donating and recycling textile (which is the second global pollutant after petroleum). As of today, we have donated to local Non-Profit Organizations including Hogar Nueva Mujer, Casa de Todos, Boys and Girls Club, and cancer patients, among others. During the past 3 years, D’Occasion Boutique has been known by the local community for spreading the word on textile handling, promoting reuse and helping the disadvantaged. After Hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rico, people are more receptive to the idea that spending time with family is better than having more belongings. Now it’s time to grow and expand this huge project and its benefits!