A loan of $950 helped to buy supplies for her business.

Gladys's story

Gladys is a member of the Communal Bank “Renacer” (To Be Reborn) which is located in the community of Cerro Navia in the city of Santiago. She earns her living by preparing and selling meals, specifically breakfast and lunch. Gladys has been doing this for seven years. She works Monday through Friday and her schedule is from 8am to 4pm. Her niece helps her with preparing the food and attending to the customers. The meals that she prepares are served directly or available for take-out. Gladys has a diner that can accommodate 25 customers, but she wants to have the kitchen and bathroom extended. She also wants to restructure her home.

Gladys buys her supplies from supermarkets and butcher shops. With this loan she plans to buy supplies for her business. Her goals are to expand and prosper her business.

Gladys lives with her husband and two children (ages 37 and 26). She says that one of her dreams on a personal level is to take a cooking class so that she can learn new techniques and recipes. This will enable her to serve a wider variety of dishes and provide better service to her customers. She is motivated to continue with her business because she is passionate about what she does. In addition, she wants to provide financial support for her mother who suffers from Alzheimer’s and her one-year-old grandson. Gladys is very pleased and appreciative of the assistance provided by Fondo Esperanza. This has allowed her to invest in her business and to generate better financial income. In relation to the other members of the Communal Bank, Gladys says that she gets along with them very well. They are very close and work together on various activities.

Cerro Navia is a community in the region of Metropolitana (where the Chilean capital of Santiago is also located) that is situated on the western side of the country. This community is known for having high levels of poverty, high population density per hectare, a lack of recreational spaces, and a shortage of labor. The economic development in this area focuses on micro-enterprises that produce basic goods such as food, clothing, shoes, liquor, and other items.

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Translated from Spanish by Kiva volunteer Ronan Reodica

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