A loan of $1,100 helped to invest in selling sweets at his stall.

Marco Patricio's story

Marco is 25 years old and was born in the Amazon rain forest in Ecuador. Here, there are very few opportunities to study and Marco barely finished primary school, though there he did learn the basic skills that help him in his life as a businessman. Marco currently lives in Pastaza, one of the cantons of the Pastaza province. This is part of the Amazon Region in the Republic of Ecuador. The capital of the canton is the city of Puyo, which is in the middle of the Amazon rain forest, in the west of the Pastaza province and at 924 metres above sea level. The area is not hugely populated but there are a number of sites that are enjoyed by both domestic and international tourists, particularly in ecological and extreme sports tourism. This is a city whose economy is growing every day in various business sectors, including cattle raising, agriculture and tourism. Financial and commercial businesses have set up branch offices here in order to take advantage of the lively economy that the city has. In every business, you can find people who do not give up even in face of a lack of jobs. Instead of giving up, people create their own businesses in order to have a decent life and make their dreams a reality.
Marco is enterprising and has always worked well in business. Five years ago he decided to invest in a children’s bouncy castle and he rents it out for specific time periods in the main squares and parks. He sets-up there hoping to earn a living. Marco spends ten hours each day preparing, cleaning, maintaining and travelling to and from children’s parks where there is demand for the bouncy castle. Marco was taught how to set up and run this business by one of his brothers-in-law.
Marco has looked at the possibility of offering other products to sell while children are playing. Among these products he has found he could sell sweets, apples, chewing gum, chocolates and such like. By doing this his income would increase and he would be able to improve his quality of life. In order to turn this idea into a reality, Marco is applying for a loan to invest exclusively in his business – to look after and expand it. So, he encourages all those around the world who would like to be a part of his dream to participate and he thanks “Fundación Alternativa” who are working to improve their borrowers quality of life. They have opened doors for microfinance projects to develop and grow.

Translated from Spanish by Kiva volunteer Iain Gaw

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