A loan of $4,625 helped a member buy perfume, creams, makeup, and underwear.

Forestal (Portoviejo) Group's story

In the city of Portoviejo within the Calderón province, the members of the Florestal communal bank meet every 2 weeks. This place is known for its delicious cuisine and it's greenery. The majority of its citizens work in farming or business.

This is a group of people that decided to come together and form this communal bank. It will help them a lot, since with these loans they will be able to improve their small businesses. They work in a variety of areas, including farming, raising animals, retail, selling food, and other things.

Mercedes is one of the members of this group. She is married (in a free union) and has three children with her husband (ages 18, 12, and 9). Her younger children are studying in school. Her husband is a bricklayer.

Mercedes is a housewife who works so as to have her own income and also help her husband with the household expenses. She sells a variety of items via catalog, including clothes, shoes, jewelry, and Yanbal, Avon, and Belcorp products (which include beauty products, makeup, perfume, and women's accessories). She works every day between 2 and 3 hours. She makes her sales on credit and collects payments every week. She has been doing this job for 6 years and got started thanks to a loan that she obtained through a bank.

This loan is to buy perfume, creams, makeup, and underwear. This is her first loan with this communal bank and was previously involved in another bank for more than 6 years. Her goals include giving her children the very best.

In this group: Mercedes Maribel, Aura Lucidia, Katty Elizabeth, Patricia Mercedes, Norma Matilde, Mercedes Elizabeth, Alexandra Pilar, Fatima Ramona, Rosa Matilde, Luis Enrique, María Marlene, Angel Rafael

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Translated from Spanish by Kiva volunteer Patrick Bales

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