A loan of $5,100 helped a member to purchase a refrigerator and additional items for food preparation.

Las Misioneras Group's story

About four years ago in Northern Guatemala, in a town called Santa Cruz del Quiche, the Friendship Bridge Trust Bank “Las Misioneras,” meaning “The Missionaries,” was formed. The group consists of eight women who are on average, 43 years old. The women share a common goal to improve the standard of living for their families and create a better future for their children. They work in various commercial ventures including the sale of clothing, manufacturing and sale of textiles, as well as selling foods like fruit and tortillas.

Each Friendship Bridge Trust Bank has officers and a board of directors. The current President of Las Misioneras is 44-year-old Candelaria who is married with four children. She is most dedicated to her children and their success. Two of them have graduated from high school and another child will graduate this year. Her last child is in the 7th grade. Candelaria, along with the women in her Trust Bank, realize that education is a vital key to a successful future for the children.

Candelaria has been a member of the Trust Bank since the beginning. Her previous loans have positively impacted her bakery business. Recently she began to sell “refacciones,” which are snacks. Candelaria is requesting a new loan and will use the funds to purchase a refrigerator and additional items for food preparation. She sells her snacks during the week at a school in her community, beginning at 9:00 in the morning. When school is not in session and the children are on vacation, Candelaria makes banana bread to sell in the community.

Along with the fellow members of her Trust Bank, Candelaria is most grateful for the funds generously donated by KIVA lenders and administered by Friendship Bridge. The women are able to maintain and increase their businesses. They also benefit from the monthly trainings on subjects like business administration and indebtedness, nutrition and health, as well as self-esteem. The combination of the loans and education is a winning one for these women who are able to step into a more empowered future, benefiting themselves, their families and their community of Santa Cruz del Quiche.

In this group: Candelaria , Marta , Lorenza , Juana , Justa Vicenta , Anacleta , Marta Cecilia , Manuela
*not pictured

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Loan details