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The Power of a Small Loan: Part 2

Written by Ebelina Arteaga, Honduras Together Manager

For a small business owner, a microloan plus business training and mentoring can make all the difference. 

Several people in Honduras have already been granted microloans through Lifeline’s Economic Empowerment program. You can read about the early stages of their businesses here

Let’s take a look at where some of them are today…

Jenny’s story

Before her Economic Empowerment training and microloan…
Jenny is a single young woman and lifelong member of Lifeline’s Tegucigalpa Christian Church in Honduras. Financially she was struggling. Jenny was trying to make a living as a hairstylist, providing her services by making house calls; she could not afford a salon space of her own. Despite having many clients, she spent most of her income on hair products and was not seeing much profit. She didn’t know what to do.

Because of the Economic Empowerment program’s training, Jenny now understands important principles of running a small business: how to budget, forecast needs, and strategize in her financial choices. 

This training had an incredible impact on her business. With the microloan and profits from the following 6 months, she was able to purchase a manicure table, hair dyes, two hair cutting chairs, and a storage cabinet for her equipment. She also is now able to offer two new services: facials and hair coloring.

Her salon is currently set up in her house. But, because she has so many clients now, she is seeking an affordable retail location to rent where she can have more space.

In the future, Jenny plans to apply for additional microloans which will allow her to expand her services even more: eyelash extensions, eyebrow pigmentation, expanded nail polish options, and the sale of shampoo and skin care products. She also dreams of decorating the salon’s interior and installing a business sign on the front of her future location!

"I thank God because He is my biggest supporter. He teaches me every day to depend on Him. His mercies are new every day to me. I thank him for His endless love," she said. 

Rosibel’s story

Before her training and microloan...
Rosibel had an informal cake-making business, making cakes for neighbors, family, and friends. But she had dreams of establishing a true baking business in order to support her family.

With her microloan, Rosibel purchased pastry tools. She continues to sell cakes, and on Saturdays she now sells 30-40 donuts and 15-20 cinnamon rolls (sometimes more!) to her neighbors. In the future, she plans to increase her clientele and offer more baked goods such as cupcakes and three milk (tres leches) cakes!

Rosibel said, "I had to learn to manage my time so that I could keep both the business and my home in order. I thank God for the opportunity that He gave me to start this business and have another source of income for my family and help my husband Carlos!"

Brenda’s story

Before her training and microloan...
For 2 years, Brenda has been running a grocery store (a “pulperia”) and a small hardware store, which helps support her husband and 3 children. To inject some money into her businesses, she took out a bank loan; however, she soon realized how much the interest was eating into her profits. 

With the microloan from Lifeline, she paid back part of that bank loan and added more products to her stores’ shelves, which brought in more clients. She plans on applying for a second microloan so that she can buy a beverage refrigerator; she believes that the sale of beverages will bring in more customers.

"I thank God for giving me the opportunity to have my own small business and the wisdom to make it grow. I also thank Him for the people at Lifeline  who motivate us to reach our goals," Brenda said.

David’s story

Before his training and microloan…
David has had a produce stand in Ocotillo, Honduras, for over two years. Managing it was very difficult for him. His full story can be found here.

Through the Economic Empowerment program, David developed the skills he needed to effectively manage his business. And now it is so successful that he is paying off his bank loan for his moto pick-up (with only 7 payments remaining!), and he has added a new section to the store. 

Best of all, he is able to support his family! His income is so strong that he no longer needs a second job. 

In the future he plans to renovate the physical space of the store and add more shelves to accommodate even more produce.

David said, "I thank God because my success is because of Him. He without me is God; but without Him, I am nobody."

Elsa’s story

Elsa has run a beauty salon in her house for over three years. She was in the first group of entrepreneurs in Lifeline’s Economic Empowerment program.

Since joining the program, Elsa has applied for and received three microloans to grow her business. With the money, she was able to purchase a chair for washing client’s hair, a display cabinet, decor items for the salon, and hair products to sell. 

Her salon business is so strong that her income not only covers her business expenses, but also allows her to support her family.

Elsa said, "I thank God for giving me the opportunity to apply for and obtain the loans in the Economic Empowerment program."

If you want to support more entrepreneurs like Jenny, Rosibel, Brenda, Elsa, and David, click HERE to get started.