10 children, 31 grandchildren and a lot of determination

Black cockles are one of Panamanians’ favorite sea foods. Tempora Mendoza has a small street stall selling this mollusc, which is collected from mangrove swamps and cooked in all sorts of ways, among them as ceviche.

This Mother Courage figure started working at fourteen in the Chame district. The business has enabled her to bring up ten children. Tempora was already a mother at 14, and had the responsibility of keeping a family together. Today she is a living example of determination and strength for her 31 grandchildren.  

With the passage of time, she extended her business in order to have a larger income. Now she also sells fruit and plants. She has been a Microserfin client since 2009 and thanks to the six loans granted by the institution, her business has been able to grow and support her large family.

Her stall is right on the side of a highway and passers-by drop in to try her black cockles. Tempora is sure that she will carry on working there as long as her health allows her.