A loan of $1,000 helped to buy fertilizer, herbicides, fungicides and seeds, and to pay laborers to farm 0.7 hectares of sorghum and 1.4 hectares of corn.

Guadalupe's story

Guadalupe is 61 years old, married, and has four children. She has been working for approximately 40 years to provide for their family, with the help of her husband. Guadalupe makes tamales and bread to sell and also has a mill for grinding boiled corn which has one hopper. Her husband used to work as a builder in the area. He also worked as a farm laborer when building work was scarce. Together with her family, Guadalupe also cares for 5 head of cattle and grows sorghum over 0.7 hectares in order to provide fodder for their cattle and grain for their farmyard birds. She also grows corn over 1.4 hectares which is used for her family's own consumption and, if the price is right, she sells some in order to cover some household expenses and the cost of cattle fodder. The area in which she lives has two well defined seasons: a rainy season when she grows basic grains and fodder for the cattle and a dry season when pasture is scarce and dried out. There is no natural water source for filling water troughs or watering crops.

Guadalupe buys her farm supplies in the city. She has to catch the only bus that services her community or travel by pick-up truck for 15 kilometers. Then she has to carry her products on her back until she reaches her farmland with her family and whoever else she hires to do this work because her husband is no longer able to work for health reasons. Fifteen years ago he suffered an accident on a construction site which left him in a coma. He lost a large part of his reasoning ability as well as his ability to carry out heavy labor. Guadalupe is practically the only one who provides income for their household.

Guadalupe will use the loan that she is requesting from Fundación Campo to buy fertilizer, herbicides, fungicides and seeds. She will also pay laborers to farm 0.7 hectares of sorghum and 1.4 hectares of corn. This loan will allow her to meet the need her family and farmyard birds have for basic grains and provide her cattle with fodder during the dry season.

In the future, Guadalupe hopes to be able to work differently, perhaps with her own capital. She would like to improve her cattle. The cows that she has right now are bred for their meat. By crossing them with a dairy bull she could obtain animals that adapt well to the local climate and produce more milk. This would make more income for her family.

Translated from Spanish by Kiva volunteer Linda Oxnard

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