Gissel builds her business and her home in the Dominican Republic

A little over a decade ago, Gissel and her husband fell on hard times. Employment was scarce and they ran out of funds to finish their home. They slept many nights under cardboard next to their two young children.

Gissel heard about a program offering group loans for women in their village and she enrolled immediately. With the help of Esperanza International, Gissel started a business and has grown her hair salon into a community hub.  By receiving that spark of microfinance capital, embracing her inherent gifts of hospitality and refining her skills through Esperanza’s wrap-around services, Gissel has built a thriving business.

Gissel poses with a hair salon client

On top of exceptional financial services, Kiva Partner Esperanza Internacional offers regular business education training, mentoring, and even seasonal health clinics.  With the proceeds from her hair salon, Gissel paid for her children’s education, helped pay for her husband’s technical degree and completed construction on their home. “It’s hard to believe,” Gissel explained, “that what used to be a cardboard box is now our ‘Casa de Paz’.”

Gissel with her family outside her hair salon

Click here to make a loan to someone like Gissel in the Dominican Republic.


About the author

Jeff Nelson