A loan of $6,550 helped a member to buy guinea pigs, pigs and animal feed.

Las Gaviotas (Cuenca) Group's story

The “Las Gaviotas” (The Seagulls) communal bank has nine women members who live in Baños Parish. Most of its territory is included within the boundaries of the “Yanuncay” and “Sunsun Yanasacha” nature preserves, protected areas in the Paute River Basin. It’s located southwest of the city of
Cuenca and it’s popular because of its great variety of typical dishes and for its thermal water swimming pools. Its residents are nice, kind and very hardworking. They work in various activities that make it possible for them to cover household expenses and to support their entire families. They still preserve their native traditions.

One of the group members is María Dolores, 47. She lives in a common law relationship and has had four children who are all married adults now living on their own. She cares for three grandchildren who are attending the local elementary school. Her husband works in agriculture and they own the house they live in.

María Dolores is a basket weaver, an activity she’s carried out since she was very young since she learned it from her parents. She sells her wares from market to market in the city. She also works raising pigs and guinea pigs to sell.

This is communal bank’s third loan and she will use it to buy guinea pigs, pigs and animal feed. Her dream is to travel to the United States.

In this group: Blanca, Clara Inela, Zoila Mercedes, Marcia Patricia, María Lourdes, Jhovana Alexandra, Laura Mercedes, María Delia, María Dolores

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Translated from Spanish by Kiva volunteer Polliz

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