A loan of $1,325 helped to grow bananas and corn.

Laura Isabel's story

Laura's a 35-year-old woman. She completed elementary school and got married at a young age to Rommel, who appears in the photo and is now 30 and works an extended schedule as a security guard. They have two children, ages 15 and 8.

They live in Los Bancos, a canton in the province of Pinchincha, one of the largest provinces in the Republic of Ecuador. This canton is located a few kilometers from the city of Quito and has a variety of forests. In addition, the people who live in the neighborhoods there are friendly and have traditions typical of this city. Laura and her family live in an area away from town, on the farm where she also works.

This canton is in a tropical area so there are farms that produce the tropical fruits that are in most demand in the national and international markets. This is why Laura started growing cacao five years ago. She learned the job from several relatives who work in agriculture. She works at least eight hours a day with the help of her parents-in-law. The most time-consuming part is harvesting the cacao. It's a manual task that takes a lot of care because there are risks of getting cut or having an accident when working with a machete.

Laura says she's not making the most of some space on the farm, so she's requesting a loan to start growing new crops, bananas and corn. These will earn more profits for her as well as help her take steps toward being able, in the future, to buy the land where they grow their crops.

Laura dreams of seeing her children become professionals. This is why it's so useful for her to have received the support of Fundación Alternativa and the Kiva lenders who, even though they're not in her country, contribute to making her dreams come true.

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Translated from Spanish by Kiva volunteer Catharine Wall

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