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"Once poverty is gone, we'll need to build museums to display its horrors to future generations. They'll wonder why poverty continued so long in human society - how a few people could live in luxury while billions dwelt in misery, deprivation and despair."
- Muhammad Yannus, Father of Microfinance
Ana Ruiz, Nicagragua
Before receiving a $100 microloan to expand her tortilla business, Ana Ruiz of Nicaragua lived in a scrap wood shack with her eight children. She had no furniture except for her worktable and her children never had shoes or attended school. After her second loan she was able to send her four oldest to school and buy eight plastic chairs so the children wouldn’t have to sit in the dirt. Before her microloan, her children were malnourished. “The little ones run around now,” she says. “They go to sleep early because they are tired from playing around, not because they are weak.”
Payday loan consolidation
Jed Smith, Lake Charles, LA
Jed Smith lives in Louisiana with his wife and 3 kids. At one point, the company he worked for went out of business and he had to find another job. He found another job but in the meantime was trying to make ends meet. He needed $500 to pay rent until his next paycheck came. So he took out a payday loan. Unfortunately, the circumstances changed and he wasn't able to pay back the loan in time, and within a couple months had more than $2,500 in payday loans. He made payments, but the debt amount kept getting bigger. Then one day he signed up for a loan consolidation program. They weren't able to erase his debt, but they negotiated with the lenders to reduce the loan amount and the interest rates. Within 12 months, he had paid off his debts and is debt free to this day.