A loan of $1,750 helped to buy school supplies and food products in larger quantities.

Cecilia's story

52-year-old Cecilia lives in the city of Cartagena and has a store which she set up 15 years ago. When she took her first steps in business, she focused on selling underwear. She was studying at the time and it was easier for her to do this. When she got married in 1980 her husband, who had a lot of experience (because he used to work in a store,) shared his knowledge with her and encouraged her to start her own business. She gradually bought sheets and toiletries which she sold to her first customers who were neighbors. She did very well. With her savings, she acquired display cabinets one by one and started to diversify her product range until she turned the business into what it is today a 'general store' where, in addition to a variety of merchandise, she also sells food, provisions, soft drinks, etc. Right now, her wish is to continue growing her business and this is why she has requested a Kiva loan (her first loan from Fundación Mario Santo Domingo). She will use it to buy school supplies and food products in larger quantities, making the most of the fact that it is the first school term of the year which is a good time to sell these products. Traditionally she has done very well at this. Cecilia's goal is to continue growing her business and to promote it further with adverts via the latest technology. With this business and both Cecilia and her husband's work, they have managed to support their two children who are now 27 and 28 years old.

Translated from Spanish by Kiva volunteer Linda Oxnard

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