A loan of $1,700 helped to buy uniforms and underclothing for children.

Paula Cleotilde's story

The Banco Comunal María Monserrate (Maria Monserrate Communal Bank) meets every two weeks in Montecristi Canton, renowned for its rich pre-colonial culture and for its handicrafts which are recognized nationally and internationally. It is the home of the famous Panama hat.

This is where 65-year-old Paula lives. Her husband passed away several years ago and left her a widow. But she has 3 grown daughters from this relationship, two of whom are married and live there with their families.

Paula is a very tenacious woman who likes to do things for herself to get ahead. She works selling all types of clothing, so she is always searching for what is in season in order to have more turnover. Her type of sales is door-to-door but she also sells from her house, where her customers come when she has new merchandise. She works every day. She extends credit to her customers and collects on a weekly basis. She has been engaged in this occupation for more than 3 years and things have gone very well for her.

This loan is to be used to purchase uniforms and underclothing for children, which is what she currently sells most. She is a founding member of the Communal Bank and she is pleased because she began her business with one of the loans.

Her dream is to have fixed premises for selling her merchandise.

Translated from Spanish by Kiva volunteer Christine Dechert

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