A loan of $500 helped purchase food for her animals.

Maria Lourdes's story

Both Maria’s mother and father worked in sales, so she grew up in a business environment. She has always worked, first with her parents, then, while studying accounting she worked as a babysitter for a senator’s baby. After that she worked for 8 years selling sweaters, embroidery and macramé products that she made herself. Today this still makes up part of her business.

After she got married, Maria worked with her husband as a street vendor selling a typical Peruvian food called papa rellena (mashed potatoes stuffed with ground meat). When her husband expressed his desire to study to become a mechanic, they saved their money to pay for a teacher. A few years later they took out a loan so her husband could start his own business as a mechanic.

Maria continued with her own business. In almost 13 years of marriage she has had a variety of jobs, working with everything related to macramé (shoes, wallets), and selling food on the street.

For the past 13 years she has also worked in her current business—raising chickens and guinea pigs to sell cooked-to-order. She also sells clothing and textiles that she offers to stores in Lima and to her friends. Maria and her husband save the money they earn from their businesses to slowly improve their home and their quality of life.

She is very happy with the opportunities these loans have given her because they allow her to work towards her goal: a better future for her children, who are 11, 7, and 2.

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Translated from Spanish by Kiva volunteer Rachel Crouch

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