A loan of $2,625 helped a member purchase fabrics, lace, thread, textile paint and other sewing supplies.

El Jardin (Flat) Group's story

This group is called El Jardín (The Garden) and is located in the community of Marcelino Rodríguez, Axochiapan in the state of Morelos, Mexico. It consists of seven female members who know each other and are neighbors. The members are Bibiana Hernández Hernández, who is planning to use her loan to purchase refreshments, tortillas, bread, mayonnaise, peppers, ham, meats, cheese, and other items to make her meals. Florentina Hernández Hernández plans to purchase refreshments, candies, bread, ham, corn, vegetables and tortillas to prepare her Mexican cuisine. Marcela M. P. plans to purchase sugar, oil, detergent, soups, refreshments and other items to stock her business. María Félix Martínez F. plans to purchase some sheets and bedspreads to fulfill her orders. Gregoria Hernández G. plans to purchase live pigs to butcher and sell meat by the kilo. Paula Díaz M. plans to purchase fertilizer for her crops. Nora Díaz Mejía plans to purchase fabrics, thread, zippers, yarn and other items for her seamstress business.

Nora is 37 years old and is a high school graduate. She is married and her husband comes from the country. They have three children: Alejandro is 16 years old and is in his third semester of college; Fernanda is 14 years old and is a junior in high school; and Rafael is 6 years old and in primary school. She has a sewing shop and is requesting the loan to purchase sewing supplies, and she also plans to buy a uniform for her son so he can march in the Nov. 20th parade. She started her business 20 years ago when she was 17 years old. She learned the craft from taking sewing courses in her village, and 10 years ago she and her sisters went to the local vocational school to take painting lessons. Now all her sisters also know how to paint. Her husband bought her a sewing machine and little by little she bought some paints and fabrics. She runs her business out of her home in Marcelino Rodríguez, Axochiapan. Her business is important because it allows her to help a little with household expenses and doesn't put everything on her husband. What she enjoys most about her work is when she finishes a job and it comes out beautiful, and she feels stimulated to keep making her garments. She knows that although she is a woman she can stand on her own, and she feels proud when her children tell her she does beautiful work. Her daughter has always been interested in helping her, and started making handkerchiefs. Now she keeps making them bigger and prettier. Nora's customers are her friends, neighbors, acquaintances and friends of her daughter, for whom she makes dresses for the school dances. Currently she has about 10 customers. It's a small amount because she is helping her mother at her food stand making Mexican cuisine in the mornings and on the weekends during the months of October, November and December, which is the busiest time of year for her mother's business. Nora's business has competition since there are a lot of people who make a living in sewing, but there is always a way to make money. With her profits she plans to buy some paintings, thread, and save some in case there is an emergency and her family needs a doctor or cover school expenses. She is planning to expand her business, taking out some textile painting jobs with Christmas themes as well as offering Christmas-themed cushions, handkerchiefs, curtains and table cloths. Marcelino Rodríguez is a village that was formed by plantation workers, and their pottery and antiques still remain. Nora's business has helped her family financially and she is able to paint in her spare time. Her biggest desire is to make improvements to her home by building a door opening up to the street and remodeling a room for her sewing and painting shop. Her dreams are to expand her business and have an industrial sewing machine. She wishes to be able to help provide for her children's education so they can become professionals. Nora feels happy and committed to this loan because she plans to stock up on sewing and painting supplies in order to make cushions, handkerchiefs and curtains with pictures of Christmas, Baby Jesus and the Virgin Mary.

The members of this group want to tell Kiva and Fundación Realidad that "we are grateful for the support we are receiving and have confidence we will grow together."

In this group: Bibiana, Florentina, Marcela, Maria Felix, Gregoria, Paula, Nora

Translated from Spanish by Kiva volunteer Marty Greenstein

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