A loan of $1,675 helped a member to buy materials such as fabric, different colors of thread, and special needles to make handicrafts.

Las Artesanas Del Fresno Group's story

The “Las Artesanas del Fresno” group consists of six members who are all close neighbors and friends in a Mazahua community with many lush trees where many people make embroidered handicrafts. Members of this community have remained loyal to their customs and traditions, one of the most important being the Mazahua language. The group members decided on their name because they all make embroidered handicrafts. Doña Alejandra, a new member of the group, is 51 and has for 28 years been married to Marcos. They have four children who are all independent. Doña Alejandra has made handicrafts for forty years, having learned embroidery very young because her mother was also an embroiderer. Doña Alejandra explained, "Knowing how to embroider is a tradition. If someone here doesn't know how to embroider, it's as if that person didn't live in the community because this skill is a part of our customs." Doña Alejandra sells handicrafts from her home and has no difficulty making them. She is seeking this loan to purchase materials such as needles, yarn, wool thread, etc. "The loan will help me greatly because it will allow me to purchase materials more easily." Doña Alejandra's challenge is the lack of a market where she can sell her handicrafts. It's difficult to earn a good income in her community and surrounding towns. "I'd like to find a way to help us identify a good market or some other way to offer our crafts," she explained. Doña Alejandra and the other group members share the goal of improving their families' quality of life. They each strive diligently to earn a better income so they can meet their household expenses: children's education, clothing, shoes, and more food. Doña Angélica and the other group members are all very grateful for the loan because it will allow them to invest in their business. Doña Ángeles will purchase cosmetics, while Doña Angelina, Zenaida, Martina, and Guadalupe pull purchase materials to make their handicrafts.

In this group: Angelina, Maria De Los Angeles Manuela , Zenaida , Martina, Guadalupe, Ma Angela

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Translated from Spanish by Kiva volunteer Stephen Volante

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