Eva is the ESPERA Promoter for El Salvador and Honduras, which means that supports women participating in the ESPERA community lending pools as they decide how to invest their loans and helps them problem solve when obstacles arise. She has been working with Mary’s Pence since 2012, and has worked with many women during that time. But one woman in particular makes her work deeply personal.
Carolina is Eva’s 21 year old daughter. When she was four years old doctors discovered a disease on her vocal cords that would cause them to swell and asphyxiate her. Carolina is Eva’s 21 year old daughter. Since then she has had 15 preventative surgeries. However, these lifesaving surgeries destroyed her voice so that she speaks very quietly, and employers have used this to discriminate against her saying that it makes her unable to perform adequately.
Eva explained, “That’s why I saw the possibility for her to start a small business that would generate income, because then I was responsible for the wellbeing of Carolina and her two children. So I saw the possibility for her to join two other women in the community and ask for a loan from the local ESPERA group.”
Eva beams with pride now when she speaks about her daughter who has just received her third loan, “Now Carolina is a woman who is fighting for her independence and autonomy, making her own decisions and generating resources to ensure her son and daughter get ahead. She is a woman who is organized with other women in her community.”