A loan of $2,350 helped to buy cattle and to finish paying for a meat grinder.

Graciela's story

Graciela has been a client of the institution for two loan cycles. On this occasion, we are visiting her so that she can tell us about her business. Graciela says that she is 38 years old and has been married to Jesús for 20 years. Together they have formed a family with five children who attend school. In addition to having the children as dependents, they are also responsible for Jesús' mom as she is elderly and widowed. Graciela tells us "I have a butcher's shop which is a business I started together with my husband one year and ten months ago. We started it because my father-in-law used to have a butcher's shop and it was a good butcher's shop. However, when he died it passed into my brother-in-law's hands. My husband also wanted to set up his own butcher's shop and so we set one up. We rent our business premises. We started out with an old display case and a meat grinder. We couldn't buy new furniture because it was all very expensive. We gradually bought a meat saw, a new display case and a new freezer because the one that we had cost too much to run. We bought all these items through loans. We are requesting a new loan from Visión Found, so that we can make our last payment on the meat grinder. We would also like to buy more cattle because recently they have become too expensive. This is one of the biggest difficulties we face. The price of cattle has shot up and often we can't pay for them immediately. Very often we ask the cattle farmer if he can wait a certain amount of time before we pay him. Some cattle farmers are very understanding of the fact that we can't pay immediately but we have also met farmers who are not understanding and we have to pay them immediately with what we have available. This means that we often have to request loans. However, we have been able to get by and we have improved our business a lot because when we started out we only used to slaughter one or two animals a week. Now we are killing three or four animals a week. We have managed all this as a result of my husband's experience as he learned the business when he was very young, when he was 15 years old. My husband has always encouraged us to work very hard and work a lot so that we can make progress with our business. We always try to provide a very good service to our customers. We try to be very humanitarian with them. We make sure that the cattle farmers who sell us their animals do not sell us animals that have been raised with Clembuterol because we know that this is very bad for our customers. We do not want to lose customers and so we try not to raise our prices so that our customers don't feel a sharp blow to their wallets. We do this because we understand that very often they don't have enough money to buy more food. We hope to eventually have two further butcher's shops where we will have employees. We want to help people who really need a job. I would also like my children to study for a degree so that they can at least work".

Translated from Spanish by Kiva volunteer Linda Oxnard

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