For my last blog, I’d like to talk specifically about one individual loan recipient, Miriam Mendoza, whom we had the pleasure of interviewing for a short promotional video for People Helping People Global.
Miriam is 38 and lives in Nueva Esperanza, a community on the outskirts of Granada, Nicaragua. With her loan from PHPG, she and her husband started a small business selling firewood out of their home. They purchase large logs and then chop, bundle, and sell it as firewood to local pulperias (convenience stores).
Miriam has 9 children (ages 7 to 25) and 2 grandchildren. Her oldest daughter lives in a small house on the same property with the 2 grandchildren, and Miriam lives with her husband and four youngest children in a slightly larger house. Miriam makes a modest income with her business, but her earnings have allowed her to make repairs on her house and to replace the plastic walls of her daughter’s house with wood paneling. She told us that as a young woman, she had hoped for an office job, but never received the education that would qualify her for one. During the interview, when asked what her dream job is, she replied, “To work more.” She is truly grateful to be working to support her family.
During and after the interview, we played tag and joked around with Miriam’s adorable family. We took countless pictures of and with her family. Her elder daughters loved using our camera, and all of them were excited to see the pictures afterwards.
The individual interviews we did for the mini-documentaries were among the best days of my time in Nicaragua. It was wonderful spending time with individual loan recipients and their families and getting to know them on a personal level. We spent one morning with Oswaldo Calderón, who is on his second loan with PHPG. Oswaldo is one of the most friendly and energetic people I’ve met. His smile is contagious! Here is the video from his interview: http://youtu.be/C8QhWETUlYY
My last project for the internship, which I will work on in Austin, is to edit the footage from Miriam’s interview to create a short video that captures the essence of her life, family, and job.
I’d like to give a special thanks the Robert S. Strauss Center for International Security and Law and the Crook Fellowship for making my internship in Nicaragua possible!