Small loans that change lives

Marleny lives with her husband, her 5-year old son and her parents in the community of Cauchal, Capira district, in a house built of leaf stalks, zinc and earth. Reaching her home is not easy, you have to cross a dirt track road which is hard to access in the rainy seasons.

This entrepreneur has had a difficult life. She has been working since she was 15 years old. First with her parents, whom she helped in farming tasks after her brother died, and then in her own business. In this latter phase she has been supported by Microserfin, which has granted her six loans over the different growth phases of her business. Since that time she has bred chickens and pigs, as well as growing and selling yucca plant, coriander, yams, ají peppers, bananas and the root vegetable taro.

She has had to overcome many obstacles, such as transporting her products by horse to the food markets in Chorrera and Panama City. Little by little she has tried to improve her own standard of living and that of her family. In 2011 Marleny applied to Microserfin for her first loan of USD 250.  The experience was positive, she met her payment obligations and in 2012 she applied for a renewal for USD 375, when she and her husband starting selling their goods in fairs, opening up better sales opportunities.

Marleny is very proud of what she has achieved to date; with Microserfin’s support she has proven that by working and investing the loans appropriately she can get on, improving her own and her family’s standard of living.