Juana Pérez lives in the rural town of La Dalia, Nicaragua with her husband and daughter. Her husband, Aquilino Rivera, has been a client of our partner, Fondo de Desarrollo (FDL), for over 7 years. In that span of time, Aquilino and Juana have been able to expand their farm to include more crops and cattle as well as earn a steadier and better income—thanks to loans and agricultural training from FDL.
Through FDL, they have also been able to purchase a Solar Home System (SHS), which consists of a 50-watt solar panel that powers three lights and a black and white television. The $800 loan was repaid in three annual installments, making it affordable for Juana and Aquilino, who, as farmers, get paid once a year.
Juana and her family have been enjoying the benefits of their SHS for over six years, benefits such as: savings on kerosene costs, adequate lighting for her daughter to study at night, and improved health because they are no longer exposed to the acrid smoke produced by kerosene lamps. But perhaps what is their favorite benefit is being able to connect with the world outside of their small town of La Dalia. “We love to watch the news on TV and learn about what is happening outside,” says Juana.