A loan of $4,275 helped a member to expand her business (construction).

Avanzando Contigo Group's story

The communal bank "Avanzando Contigo" is made up of 16 members from the city of Temuco. They work mainly in the area of retail sales, including sales of used clothing, underwear, food according to the season of the year (for example, tamales), and catering. Other members also attend to an internet cafe, make and repair shoes, and do embroidery.

The member interviewed was Esperanza, who is the president of this group. In the photograph she is found in the first row, crouching, with shoulder-length hair. She has a deli (where she sells perishable and non-perishable food) in her house. With the loan she wants to expand her business, since her dream is eventually have a mini-market where she can sell a large variety of products, including not only food but also office supplies. To achieve this she wants to start gradually incorporating new products into her business. For example, her next goal is to buy a photocopier.

In addition, she has other personal goals such as completing her last year of high school, which she is doing this year in the evenings, so that later on she can begin to study for an advanced degree. Her main dream is to be a source of work for others like her who want to succeed. Her greatest motivation is her family: her 2 daughters, aged 11 and 2, and her husband who supports her in everything.

Esperanza feels that the Fondo Esperanza supports her personal development and economic stability, and she is very grateful for the easy terms at which she has been able to access credit.

Temuco is the capital of the Araucanía region. The city is located 670 kilometers to the south of Santiago (the capital of Chile), and has number of lake resorts and colorful vegetation and wildlife. It is worth highlighting that this region is where 50 percent of Chile's Mapuches (indigenous people) live.

In this group: Esperanza, Julia , Rosa , Lucila , Haydee , Josefina , Modesta, Priscila , Lusfemia , Marisol, Carmen , Norma , Karín , Erika , Demetria , Marta

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Translated from Spanish by Kiva volunteer Lisa Grobar

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