Continuing our series, One Bike, Two Wheels, Four Revolutions we take a look at how one bicycle often affects up to four lives (or more!). Here we introduce a new bike owner who received a bike from our last container shipped from our Charleston location.
But we also bring you the story of one beneficiary who benefited from the bike project, without even receiving a bicycle. Through our local partner FINCA Costa Rica we are improving the lives of small business owners and in turn entire communities. This micro-finance project works with communities to establish Community Credit Enterprises (ECC) that offer small business loans to its members. Those loans help develop local business such as cattle farming, agriculture, commerce, or services.
Plutarco Sequeira is also from Canalete, where Maria, Tonito, and Eduviges live. Plutarco and his wife own a small convenience store known as a pulperia. For four years they have been supplying the community with items such as food and cleaning supplies. Given the remoteness of Canalete, Plutarco's store is quite popular among his neighbors. They are able to dash in and pick up items without spending a lot of time walking all the way into town.
Plutarco asked his local ECC for a $1,000 loan so that he could increase his stock with a wider variety of items. The loan allowed Plutarco to purchase more merchandise for his customers. They can now buy most of their needs right there in Canalete rather than spending time and energy walking to the next bigger town where more goods and services are sold.
Plutarco and his wife now bring in more income to support their family's needs. They also provide a valuable service to the community which helps improve their lives as well.
It's through our bike donations that these ECCs raise capital for the community loans. Little Emmanuel received this bike from our last container when his family purchased it at the community warehouse. He will soon learn to ride to ride on two wheels just like the previous owner of this bike.