A loan of $1,000 helped to buy fish, oil, bananas, peanuts and other foodstuffs.

Zulema Yadira's story

The “1 de Febrero” (February 1) communal bank meets every two weeks in Picoaza Parish in the city of Portoviejo, a city known for being a very commercial zone, for its traditional feast day of Saint Peter and Saint Paul and for the cheerfulness of its people.

Zulema, 30, lives in this place. She’s in a common law relationship and has three children who are 14, 12 and 8 years of age. The two older ones attend secondary school and the youngest one is in elementary school. Her husband is a merchant.

Our friend is a very good housewife who in order to earn something on her own and use these resources to help her husband with household expenses, prepares fast-food snacks to sell like turnovers, ‘corviches’ [deep-fried plantain stuffed with fish or other meat], tortillas as well as soft-drinks and coffee for those who prefer that beverage. Mornings she also prepares and sells the delicious “Encebollado de Pescado” [a type of fish soup] which is very well-liked by her customers. This is how she and her family are able to get ahead since what her husband earns isn’t enough to live on. She’s had her business for 8 years and it gives her much satisfaction.

She will use this loan to buy fish, oil, plantain, peanuts and other foodstuffs to prepare her meals. She’s been in the communal bank for five cycles and likes it because of the group’s unity. Her dream is to own a great restaurant.

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Translated from Spanish by Kiva volunteer Polliz

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