A loan of $2,000 helped to buy mail order merchandise such as perfume, clothes and cosmetics.

Shirley De Los Angeles's story

Shirley is an entrepreneur who lives in Costa Rica, in the province of Puntarenas, Golfito, Pavones in the south of the country. It is known for being an area of the country with low rates of human development and compared to other areas of the country it has the most unfavorable rates of education and pay. Therefore one of the alternatives for these women is to develop their own sources of self-employment. This business began with a tip that Shirley received when she worked as a waitress in the restaurant of a hotel in Golfito. It was in that job that she began to sell mail order merchandise such as clothes and cosmetics. She left this job when she realised that it was a good alternative that allowed her to be close to her children and to earn an income that meant she could provide her family with a good quality of life.

Apart from the maintenance of her children, she is also responsible for her sister who was left in her care when her mother died. Her daughter and her sister are the same age and they live together under the same roof and Shirley must therefore watch over them.

The loan is important for the development of her job as the suppliers only offer credit facilities of less than one month which means it is difficult for her to offer longer credit terms to her customers. This limits the expanding of the market, due to her financial limitations.

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Translated from Spanish by Kiva volunteer Miriam O'Brien

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