Total loan: $5,725

Nueva Esperanza Group

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San Cristobal Totonicapan , Totonicapán Department, Guatemala / Arts

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A loan helped to purchase thread, dye, parts for the loom, and supplies for her textile business.

Nueva Esperanza Group's story

Ten hard working ladies compose the Friendship Bridge Trust Bank “Nueva Esperanza”, meaning “New Hope,” that is located in San Cristóbal, Totonicapán, in the western highlands of Guatemala. Two of the women are new to the group and are quite excited about opportunities for growth, not only for themselves but for their families as well. Santa is 38 years old with three children and is quite pleased that two of them are in elementary school. She is a member of the Trust Bank. Santa works along with her husband in a family business. The couple creates and decorates beautiful traditional skirts called “cortes.” The “cortes,” that vary from three to six yards of fabric, are usually woven on a treadle loom by men. Each village has its own unique design and hemline length. The women step into the tubular shape of the “corte,” tuck their ornately decorated blouse or “huipil” into it, and complete the outfit with a handmade embroidered belt called a “faja.” Santa is quite creative and sees the necessity of updating her designs and improving the quality of the fabric that she weaves. She is requesting a new loan that she will use to purchase thread, dye, parts for the loom, and supplies for her textile business. Her goal is to increase sales, generate additional income, and improve the living standard of her family. Her family is committed to helping her meet the demand of her clients. Her children and husband are quite involved in the business. Santa also employs a young man who helps her deliver the finished “cortes.” The ladies of the “Nueva Esperanza” Trust Bank look forward to their monthly meetings with a Loan Officer from Friendship Bridge. They not only make payments on their loans but also participate in educational seminars that cover a wide variety of timely subjects. Some of these topics include effective business management practices, health, hygiene, and the use of medicinal plants as well as self-esteem and women’s rights. Recently, the women learned about childhood and teenage pregnancy. Friendship Bridge calls the combination of small loans and education “Microcredit Plus.” It is a most effective combination. KIVA investors bring hope to the women of the Trust Bank and are much appreciated. The ladies can step into a brighter future as empowered women eliminating poverty. We look forward to providing an update to you on the members of the “Nueva Esperanza” Trust Bank.