Elvira Mamani spent her childhood at her mother's side, observing and absorbing the family craft of fine embroidery. Now Doņa Elvira uses that craft to support her own three daughters. Her husband works as a construction worker, an uncertain job which sometimes leaves him without income for long periods of time. Elvira is the family's main breadwinner.
Elvira works out of a little shop located within her own house in the northern zone of La Paz. In this tiny space she creates and sells her embroideries and clothing. Though she worked tirelessly, embroidering all day every day, Elvira found that it was hard to get ahead in her business without any capital. She realized that if she had a little money, she could buy more materials at a lower cost and earn more.
Luckily, she heard about BancoSol, where small entrepreneurs like her are taken seriously. Although she had no collateral, BancoSol recognized that Elvira had talent and an enterprising spirit. They bet on these intangibles and made Elvira a loan of $300 for a four-month term. The investment paid off, and Elvira repaid the entire loan with interest, on time.
Now that Elvira has seen how one loan increased her revenue, she plans to request $600 to invest in a modern sewing machine. That way she'll be able to produce more, faster.
"BancoSol not only helps me grow my business, it also gives me hope that better days are coming," says Elvira. Elvira hopes to keep growing her business so that she can hand it down to the next generation. Her youngest daughter, Sandrita, looks like a promising candidate. Sandrita has already taken an interest in the family craft, and spends every afternoon after school in the shop, learning from her mother.