A loan of $4,275 helped a member to buy charcoal and bags to supply her business.

Emprendiendo Con Esperanza Group's story

This communal bank, called Emprendedores con Esperanza, is made up of 17 entrepreneurs who make their livings in different areas, including cake sales, charcoal sales, department store, clothing sales, mixed salad sales, beauty products, services, and others. All of them are in the city of Linares.

In the photo, Margarita, the president of the communal bank, is standing in the first row, second from the right, wearing a black jacket. She's wearing her dark-brown hair loose.

She has worked in the area of charcoal sales for five years. She comments that for the summer season she'll begin working with fruits, with blueberries. She works from Monday through Sunday from her house, and she arranges her schedule according to her availability. She buys her merchandise in shops and the city market in the city of Linares at low prices, which is economically advantageous.

With the loan she'll buy charcoal and bags to supply her business. One of Margarita's goals is to grow with the business to generate more income to have a better quality of life.

Margarita lives with her two children, ages 11 and 6, who are students. Her dreams for work are to have more charcoal and to add firewood to her business for more income. Her dreams for her family are for her children to finish their studies and in the future get professional degrees, and so see her work completed.

She's very happy about and grateful for the opportunity from Fondo Esperanza because it will allow her to invest in her business. She comments that the trainings have been fundamental for her business as well as for her personal development because she has learned to organize and better distribute her income and investments. With regard to her group, she feels very comfortable because there's communication and solidarity.

Linares is an important urban center in the Maule region, located in the central part of the country. In this area agriculture and wine production are important and stand out in the area of exports. The production of grains (rice, wheat, corn, and oats), vegetables (beets, cabbage, lettuce, chard, and legumes), and fruit stands out. Linares is the main rice-producing province in Chile; in fact, 78% of the country's production of this grain comes from this province, especially in the town of Parral.

In this group: Margarita, Maria, Isabel, Yessica, Aladino, Graciela, Marisa, Maria, Patricia, Carolina, Olivia, Barbara, Bernardo, Juan, Paulina, Ines, Jacob

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Translated from Spanish by Kiva volunteer Catharine Wall

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