Sandra Andero is a mother of two young boys who in November of 2013 decided that she wanted to begin contributing to her family´s income. But with access to very limited capital and only a primary school education, Sandra did not know how she would be able to fulfill her dream, which was to open a small clothing store in the front room of her house. Luckily, a friend of hers was in the process of creating a group to receive a loan from FINCA, and invited Sandra to join. Because it was a group loan, Sandra was able to participate even though she had not yet started her business.

The group included Sandra, her friend, and seven other people living in their village, all of whom Sandra was already friendly with. FINCA´s goal in creating groups to receive loans is that if group members are already friends, it will be easier for them to look out for one another. There were seven women and two men in Sandra´s group, and each received a loan of L 6,000. Using the loan, Sandra was able to open her store, and has worked hard to make it successful.

Sandra is thankful to FINCA for giving her the loan, but also for providing her with an opportunity to begin saving some of her earnings. She is also thankful for FINCA´s help in creating a culture of saving in her family. Sandra´s seven-year-old son, Mario, began saving his money in a bright red FINCA piggy bank. In six months he has saved L 44, and he wants to keep saving. He says he is saving up the money to buy himself a new pair of football (soccer) shoes.

Sandra´s first loan cycle ends in a month, and she hopes to receive another loan. She knows that an infusion of capital will allow her to grow her business and, hopefully, move her store to a larger locale. Sandra is looking forward to continuing her relationship with FINCA, and to further improving life for her family.