Making Baking Make Cents!
Estanzuela, an isolated, mountainous community on El Salvador’s border with Honduras is made up of 53 households and is roughly 70% women and children. Most men in the community are farmers of corn and beans, while most women tend to domestic responsibilities. There is little to no opportunity for women to work outside of the home in Estanzuela.
The goals of this project are to provide business and leadership training to a group of twelve women and support the launch of their small business selling baked goods. The women have determined that the success of the project will be measured by them increasing their monthly household income by 25% in the first five months. Currently, the women are baking bread in houses that have efficient cookstoves, but their long term goal is to construct a community center that can house the operations for their bread shop.
The bakery is now up and running. Currently, the women sell six different varieties of bread, as well as pizza. Each month they aim to include a new type of bread to diversify their menu. The youth from the community have also been engaged and help pass out bread samples to community members, and a few young women are being trained to work in the bakery.
"Just one year ago I had no skills and now I am a baker with a skill that brings me a small monthly income. I am very happy for this." - Project Participant
"My husband saw the great opportunity of the bakery project and decided that it is something that we should do together. He is so enthusiastic, that makes me so happy!"- Glenda, Project Leader
"The bakery is the first of its kind in Estanzuela. No one before has had to opportunity to suppliment their family's income with funds that were generated from their own efforts. The group started with just an idea and the desire to improve their situations. Now they have a business were products are created and sold for profit. The bakery is something that everyone can be proud of." - Asiha, Peace Corps Volunteer