A loan of $675 helped to buy tagua nuts.

Rosa Del Pilar's story

The “Virgen Del Rosario” communal bank meets every two weeks in Colorado, Montecristi Canton (Portoviejo), known for its rich pre-colonial culture and for its crafts that are famous both nationally and internationally. Most of the residents of this place manufacture tagua [nuts known as vegetable ivory] buttons, are craftspeople or in general commerce.

We met Rosa, 34, here. She’s a single mother of three children who are 15, 13 and 11 years old and who go to elementary and secondary schools. She lives in her parents’ house. She’s been in the communal bank for three cycles and likes it because of the help they give her with the loans.

She is a very good housewife who in order to earn her own income manufactures buttons made from tagua. To do so she uses a lathe (machine to cut tagua) that makes the buttons but leaves them in an unfinished state. They are then delivered to merchants that come here to buy them and take them to Manta to be exported abroad where they are finished. She works every day and has been in this business for almost two years.

She will use this loan to buy tagua nuts which is the raw material to make the buttons. She’s been in the communal bank for three cycles and she likes it because of the easy payments. Her dream is to have a large factory with more technology.

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Translated from Spanish by Kiva volunteer Polliz

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