Carmen (Peru)

A Mother’s Dream Fulfilled

For Carmen Rosa Galvez, life had always been hard. Raising her family on the outskirts of a slum area in the highlands of Peru, Carmen spent 10 years carving local stone into small statues. Because she had no stall

at the craft market, she had to rely on others to sell her crafts and share the profit with her. On those days, she and her three children ate well. But on days when Carmen could not find a vendor to help, her family went hungry. Carmen knew that if she could just pay for a market stall she could sell to tourists every day. But no bank would trust Carmen with a loan.

Working Together for a Change

Life changed for Carmen when Freedom from Hunger and its local partner FINCA Peru helped her and other women form a credit circle. Our program staff showed the women how they could borrow money if they

Carmen puts some final touches on a stone carving she will sell at the local craft market.

stood together, co-signing for one another’s loans. And, by partici- pating in education sessions created especially for women living in rural areas, the women learned how to manage their businesses wisely and about child health and nutrition. Working with a field agent familiar with local customs, they used guided conversation to help each other use this new information to make life-saving changes.

Each Success Leading to the Next

With the encouragement of her group, Carmen took her first loan of $50. “The very first time I took out a loan, it was for my own market stall,” Carmen told us. “Before, I had to travel from market to market, and didn’t make much money.”

The Power of Caring, the Power of Action

Carmen’s life has been transformed because of the support of caring people like you. Through the loyal contributions of our donors, Freedom from Hunger is delivering self-help solutions to 750,000 women and their families around the world.

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