A loan of $4,125 helped a member to buy beverages, avocados, mayonnaise, cheese.

Fortaleza Group's story

This communal bank is called "Fortaleza" and is comprised of 18 entrepreneurs who are engaged in different areas, among which there are: selling bread, weaving, fast food, selling clothes, groceries, selling fruit, services, and others. All of them belong to the ciy of Temuco.

Gabriela is a member of this communal bank group. In the picture, she is standing in the back row, in the second place from left to right. She is wearing a purple sweatshirt and black sweat pants with white stripes. Her hair is dark brown and wears it tied up.

She is engaged in fast food for one month. She says she works Monday through Saturday in an establishment near her home. She works alone and her schedule is distributed according to her availability. She sells steaks, hot dogs and French fries. She buys merchandise and ingredients she uses in supermarkets, butcher shops, and low cost potatoes distributors, therefore economically convenient.

With the loan she will buy beverages, avocados, mayonnaise, and cheese. One of Gabriela's goals is to continue with the business to generate more income, and with this achieve a better quality of life.

Gabriela lives alone. Her dreams on a personal level are to have her own home, and on a work level to grow with her business and attract more customers. She is very happy and grateful for the opportunity provided by Fondo Esperanza, because it will allow her to invest in her business. For the group of the communal bank which she is a member, she says it has very good communication. Furthermore, the training has helped her to learn new sales strategies and accounting.

Temuco is the capital of the region of Araucanía. The city is located 670 km south of Santiago (capital of Chile). In the surroundings, there are a number of lake spas (Pucón, Villarrica) and native flora and fauna very striking, concentrated in nearby natural parks. It's worth to mention that in this region lives 50% of the Mapuche, indigenous people of our country.

In this group: Gabriela, Alejandra, Alberto, Walter, Carolina, Rhenzo, Mamerto, Lorena, Carolina, Maria, Paula, Norma, Jacqueline, Karen, Jeny, Nancy, Filomena, Marcela

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Translated from Spanish by Kiva volunteer Elisabet Falgueras

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