A loan of $1,175 helped a member a portion of the Estrella de San Gabriel (St Gabriel’s Star) group will be used by María Cristina to buy in bulk raw materials to make tortillas.


Estrella De San Gabriel Group's story

The women of the Estrella de San Gabriel are entering the second nine month cycle of Namaste business advice, financial education and a small loan. They all did very well in the first nine month cycle. Most of the women in this group, from the very small town of San Gabriel, Suchitepequez, have tortilla making businesses and one woman sells other food items. Only one woman in the group can read and write. The women have made good progress with their businesses as Namaste is the first organization to give them the opportunity to learn how to manage their business and their money, in addition to offering microcredit.

María Cristina, second from the left in the photo, is a 37 year old mother of two children, one in school and one still too young for school. With her business, making and selling tortillas, she is able to send her children to school. She has had this business for seven years. During her first nine months with Namaste she moved her business from a stall in the central market in the nearby city of Mazatenango to a stall she rents in the bus terminal in her small town of San Gabriel. With her new loan of she plans to buy a wood table on which to put her tortilla baskets and she will also buy in bulk the corn for the tortillas and the wood for cooking them.
Currently she sells about 28,000 tortillas in a month, and her business plan for the next nine months has her selling 7,000 more, including sales at breakfast time. Her projections are that over these nine months, when she can buy her materials in bulk, she will increase her monthly sales from the current Q5,600 (US $718) to Q7,000 (US $897) with a profit of Q2,656 (US $340).

In this group: Francisca Cleotilde, Rosa, Irmina, Maria Cristina, Martha Maria



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