A loan of $2,075 helped a member to buy beads, earrings, necklaces, rings, checkered fabric, etc.

6 Palomas Group's story

The group “6 Palomas” ["6 Doves"] is made up of six women who are very hard-working and responsible. Previously they were four members, but two more people joined the group. For that reason they decided to choose this name for the association. They live in a community of the Mazahua people, where the largest festival happens on September 28 and 29. There is a big horse race; people go through the streets to Santo San Miguel; loud rockets are heard; and in the evening people light fireworks known as "toritos" ["little bulls"] or "castillos" ["castles"].

Rosa, or Rosy as her friends call her, is a member of the communal bank. She is 43 years old and has been married for 24 years to Macario; together they have formed a family with nine children, two boys and seven girls. Five of them are still dependent. While Mr. Macario works in the countryside, Ms. Rosy operates a small notions store. For this reason she is requesting a loan from VisionFund and KIVA to buy more merchandise such as earrings, rings, and inexpensive bracelets. She also sells thread and checkered fabrics for sewing, among other things. She says that although these are very simple and small things, it is going very well for her. She comments that she started her business 15 years ago, because Rosy had a great desire to help her husband with the household expenses: "I saw how my husband was working long hours, but we couldn't make ends meet, and we didn't have enough money to cover all of the household expenses and the education of all of our children."

She started the business in her mother-in-law's house, but her sales were not as favorable as she had hoped, so she decided to move the business to her house. However, in her mother-in-law's house she left behind a nixtamal [corn] mill which is also profitable. Rosy is very happy with her business, and she says that she wants to continue working hard and not abandon it, because currently her biggest difficulty is the competition within her community. Rosy comments: “My biggest dream is to be able to improve the store, because now it is only roofed with sheet metal, and to expand it to sell other items." Rosy also has the desire to buy a small truck and go out to "ranchar" (offer her products in other communities). In this way she will be able to increase her earnings to pay for the household expenses and her children's education. The other members of the group are Gloria, who will invest her loan in chickens and embroidered items; Teresa, who will buy sheep; Martina, who will obtain some turkeys; Miriam, who will invest in pigs; and Catalina, who will buy a nixtamal mill. All of them are very grateful to VisionFund and KIVA for the loan, because it will help them in various ways with their economic activities.

In this group: Rosa, Gloria, Teresa, Martina, Miriam, Catalina

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Translated from Spanish by Kiva volunteer Patricia Linderman

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