A loan of $575 helped to buy supplies to make handicrafts that she does not have and are on order, and to pay her providers to get an important discount.

Gladys's story

Gladys O. is a very hard-working and creative woman. She has four children ranging from 19 to 41 years old. She is a widow, and she lives in the city of Cartagena de Indias. This city is on the northern coast of Colombia, and that is where she has her business, “Artesanías Gladis” (Gladis’ Handicrafts).

When she came to Cartagena in 1981 she started making handicrafts in her own home. She sold them to people nearby. She had a business site in the center of the city, but the owners sold the place. She had to close her business.

As Gladys is persistent, she devoted herself to teaching her art. Later she organized handicraft fairs. She established her business again and got customers. Her goal is to get more publicity for her business so that she is able to promote it again. That way she will achieve important growth that will generate greater income.

Gladys lives in a traditional tourist neighborhood with immense colonial houses. It borders upon the Cartagena Bay and a growing commercial sector, which is very close to the city harbor. Her main customers are located in the Manga, Pie de la Popa, and the Bocagrande neighborhoods.

Her liabilities are the accounts to be paid to her providers. Her business is always well stocked. She is now applying for her first loan with the Fundación Mario Santo Domingo. She will use it to buy supplies to make handicrafts that she does not have and are on order. She will also pay her providers in order to get an important discount, which she will use to reinvest.

While she builds her dream she persistently has a profitability of no less that 32%. She gradually intends to increase that amount by winning new customers for her beautiful products.

Translated from Spanish by Kiva volunteer Ginny Kalish

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