A loan of $1,000 helped to buy catalog merchandise such as clothing, trinkets, and household goods.

Cintia's story

Cintia is 36 years old and lives in the community of La Ceiba, which is located in the canton of Orotina in Alajuela Province. This rural area lost a great deal of business activity after the railroad closed. The area where she lives has many dairy farms. Cintia lives with her companion and their two young children next to one of these farms. She has taken advantage of this situation in order to support her family financially by selling merchandise to the farm residents and the general community. Retail businesses are scarce and her customers have many needs.

Cintia sells clothing and catalog products of various brands. In addition, on her property, she raises chickens for the meat and eggs, and also has pigs. With these sources of income, she is able to support her children’s education and help her companion with the expenses of feeding their family.

Cintia wakes up at 5am so that she can prepare breakfast for her husband and then send her children off to school. Afterwards she feeds her farm animals. In the afternoons, she offers her products to the farm workers who visit her and collects payment from those who have already ordered. She also travels into town to see more customers and then finishes her work around 6pm. Her greatest wish is to have a house of her own and to build a store where she can sell her merchandise. The biggest challenge is dealing with the poverty in the area because she must look for ways to generate income and feed her family.

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Translated from Spanish by Kiva volunteer Ronan Reodica

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