A loan of $1,100 helped to paint the storefront where she sells food.

Nelly Maria's story

Nelly is 61-years old. She is an enterprising and hard-working woman who never let herself get defeated by the lack of opportunities her lack of education put forth. She was able to go to secondary school, but she didn't finish. Nelly married Luis, who is now 67-years old, when she was very young. Luis works separately from Nelly as a store-owner. They had three children together who are now all grown, each with his own obligations and independence. Nelly lives with her husband in Santo Domingo, the inland port that ties the Coastal and Mountainous Regions of Ecuador. Santo Domingo has become one of the country's most important cities because of the high commerce traffic that exists and because of the agricultural and livestock production that is generated there.
By taking advantage of the tourist and business traffic, many of the San Domingueños have established businesses that earn them an income and, in some cases, provide employment for others.
Nelly started her business 25 years ago selling fast food from a sales stall. It was very productive for her and little by little she expanded and improved her business. She works from Monday to Sunday in the evenings and at night, which is when the demand is highest. Her husband helps her and, in addition, she has begun to stock up her business with sweets and a variety of other items to sell from her storefront. With the passage of time, her storefront has become run-down and needs some repairs. That is why Nelly is requesting a loan, with which she will paint and fix-up her storefront so that it is suitable for giving dignified service to her customers. One year ago, Nelly took out a loan from Fundación Alternativa. She invested it in working capital. She was always up to date with her repayment schedule and now, one year later, she is returning to look for assistance so she can earn more customers and see her income increase. This will help her to improve her standard of living and have some money saved for health concerns for herself and her husband. They went through a difficult experience two years ago when her husband fell ill. The costs were very high and almost ruined them financially.
Nelly is grateful to the Kiva lenders, who make is possible for so many dreams to come true around the world.

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Translated from Spanish by Kiva volunteer Marni Siegal

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