A loan of $6,125 helped a member to buy pants, blouses, t-shirts, and other garments.

Estrellas Del Paraiso (Manta) Group's story

Estrellas del Paraíso Communal Bank meets every two weeks in the El Paraíso neighborhood in the city of Manta. The city's known for its beautiful beaches that are visited year round, for being an incomparably beautiful city, and for its tourist attractions.

This group is made up of ten women and four men who decided to get together and start a communal bank. It's going to help them a lot because they're going to improve their small businesses with the loans. The earn a living with a variety of jobs, including general sales, food sales, and services.

Aracely, 35, is one of the members of this group. She's in a common-law relationship from which she has four children, ages 18, 16, 14, and 6, all of whom are college, high school, or elementary school. Her husband is a fisherman.

Aracely wants to earn money on her own so she can get ahead in the household. She earns a living selling all types of clothing. She sells door-to-door as well as at home, where her customers visit her. She works when she's not busy. She leaves clothing with her customers on credit and charges every two weeks. She has been doing this job for three years and it helps her family get ahead.

She's going to use this loan to buy more merchandise: pants, blouses, t-shirts, and other garments.

This is Aracely's first loan cycle with the communal bank and she likes it because of the help she gets with the loans. Her dream is to give her children the best.

In this group: María Aracely, Jessica Karina, María Verónica, Janeth Elizabeth, Gabriela Margarita, Gladys Concepción, Edison Fernando*, Marisol Monserrate, Rosa Nelly, Washington Gabriel, Santos Ceferino, Evelyn Brigitte, Carlos Willy, Mayra Alejandra
*not pictured

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Translated from Spanish by Kiva volunteer Catharine Wall

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