A loan of $3,350 helped a member to buy wool and leather.

Nuestra Solución Group's story

This Communal Bank is called “Nuestra Solución” (Our Solution) and consists of 21 entrepreneurs who engage in business activities such as preparing and selling fast food, selling perfumes, making and selling cheese, making handicrafts out of wood, and other trades. All of them are from the city of Concepción.

Sonia is a member of the Communal Bank. In the photograph, she is the first person standing on the left-hand side wearing a yellow jacket and black cap. She makes earrings, rings, and bracelets with macramé (fabric that is woven into a lace-like pattern). Sonia also makes handbags and wallets out of leather. She has been in this trade for six years. Sonia says that her sales diminish during the winter when students go on break. However, she says the month of September is good for her because her sales go up at that time. Her work schedule is from 11am to 8pm. Her merchandise is generally sold to distributors. With this loan, Sonia will buy materials, specifically wool and leather in different colors and textures. Her goal is to increase her business.

Sonia lives with her husband and her 11-year-old son. Her dreams in general are to prosper in her business and to provide her family a better quality of life. Sonia is very pleased with and thankful for the services provided by Fondo Esperanza, especially the kindness that is expressed by her Communal Bank group. She says that the members are hardworking entrepreneurs who are committed to their businesses.

The member who appears in the upper left hand corner could not attend the photo session of the communal bank due to a personal obligation that she had to resolve. It is for this reason that she was allowed to be absent during the meeting.

Concepción is situated at the mouth of the Biobío River, one of the largest in Chile. It is located in the southern part of the country in the Biobío region. Concepción played an important role in Chilean history. It was the site of important battles and became a major settlement, especially during the Arauco War, since it lies on the border with the Mapuche territory. Concepción now experiences significant economic and demographic development. It is considered to be one of the urban areas that has developed into a major administrative, financial, and commercial center within Chile, just behind Santiago and Valparaíso.

In this group: Sonia, Ingrid, Juan, Raúl, Elizabeth, Magdalena, Lucy, Pilar, Mitzi, Jessica, María, Tania, Irma, Carolina, Pamela, Karina, Edith, Emilio, Yovanina, Cristian, Julio

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Translated from Spanish by Kiva volunteer Ronan Reodica

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