A loan of $675 helped to buy perfumes, creams, cosmetics and clothing.

Irlanda Marilux's story

The "20 de Abril" communal bank meets every two weeks in Montecristi canton in Portoviejo province, which is known for its rich pre-colonial culture, and for its handicafts, which are recognized at the national and international level. This is the home of the famous toquilla straw hats (also known as Panama hats).

This is the place where Irlanda lives. She is 59 years old, and is in a common-law relationship. They have three children, three of them adults, and one still living at home. Her husband is a shopkeeper. She is a teacher in the local school, but in addition to this, she also has a business selling clothing and Avon products (beauty products, cosmetics, perfume, and ladies' accessories).

She works every day, since from Monday to Friday she works at the school, and on weekends she sells her products. She sells her products on credit, and collects every two weeks. She also sells in her workplace. She has been doing this for six years, and it's going very well. This loan is to buy perfumes, creams, cosmetics, and clothing of every kind.

This is her third loan cycle with the communal bank, and she likes it because of the unity in the group. Her dream is to have a boutique.

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Translated from Spanish by Kiva volunteer Jeff Goldie

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