A loan of $1,525 helped a member buy soft drinks and vegetables for her Mexican snacks business and buy clothing to stock her door-to-door clothing sales business.

Las Orquideas Group's story

This community bank is called Las Orquideas (The Orchids). It is located in the community of Jaloxtoc, in the city of Ayala, which is in the state of Morelos, Mexico. It consists of four members, who are women and are neighbors.

The members of the group are: Dolores B. V., who is going to use her loan to buy men's and women's perfumes to fill the orders she has received from catalog sales; Señora María Guadalupe F. C. is going to buy chicken to sell by the piece; Señora Eva Barragán A. is going to buy sheets and bedspreads to fill her catalog orders; Señora Graciela H. M. is going to buy soft drinks and vegetables to increase her business, which is selling Mexican snacks and clothing through door-to-door sales.

Señora Graciela is 35 years old. She studied in the open junior high school for one year and obtained her certificate. She is married and has 3 children: René Josué is 14 and is in secondary school; Andrés is 13 and is in secondary school; and Anai is 11 and is in primary school. Señora Graciela has two businesses; she sells clothing door-to-door and she sells snacks such as tostadas, prepared chicharrones, and tamales. She is applying for the loan to increase her business. She is going to buy soft drinks and vegetables to prepare the snacks that she sells. In her clothing business, she offers her customers shoes and clothing such as pants, blouses, handkerchiefs and skirts. She began her business a year ago. She was instructed by Señora Guadalupe, who is also a member of the group and invited her to join. Señora Graciela liked it and decided to sell clothing door-to-door. Her husband lent her the money to buy the clothing, and she remembers that when she began to sell she was very happy. Her business is important because it has helped her earn money and they are better off, and it is a help when they need to buy something. Her favorite part of her business is when she goes out to offer clothing to her customers because it is relaxing and she meets more people. She calls on 20 to 25 customers a day. In addition, she feels proud when she makes sales and has money. She uses the earnings from her business to improve her house and to buy more clothing to sell. She wants to buy a three-wheeled vehicle to use in transporting her merchandise, and she thinks she can do it with loans. Her children help her in her business. When she sells tostadas, they help her carry her things to the corner, because not many people pass by her house. The improvements that she wants to do on her house are to finish the bathroom and tile it. Her plans and hopes are that her family will live better and that her business increases. Señora Graciela is very happy with the loan that she will receive because it is going to increase her business. Her goals for her children are that they excel and that they study for careers so that they live better. This loan will help her because she knows how to make good use of it.

The members of the group want to say to Kiva and Fundación Realidad (Reality Foundation) "many thanks for having confidence in us and lending us the money to excel in our businesses." Jaloxtoc is a pretty, peaceful, united, and community-minded town. The climate is warm.

In this group: Dolores , Maria Guadalupe , Eva , Graciela

Translated from Spanish by Kiva volunteer Pam McMurry

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