Women´s socio-economic contributions and entrepreneurial potential remain largely unrecognized and untapped in the communities of Quiché.
USAID´s Communities Leading Development (CLD) project attends to the community´s most important needs as identified through an inclusive community planning process, providing gender-inclusive business opportunities.
Recently, CLD helped 250 people (230 women) in 10 communities of Quiché with supplies and training to start egg production, which stimulates rural entrepreneurship. For the women, the business is helping generate decent and productive work, achieve gender equality, reduce poverty, and ensure stronger economies and communities.
For Catarina Pérez, one of 25 female egg producers in Xexuxcap, Nebaj, the farm has helped her economically and with self-esteem, as she is now part of a new business network in her community. Each farm is a small business, and women have jointly organized their marketing and purchase of supplies, achieving better prices. Business networks are also encouraged to save together on a regular basis; in one year, Catarina and the other women plan on renovating their hens as their productiveness decreases after this time.
“From the earnings I save Q95.00 ($12.50 USD) a month to buy more hens. I will renovate my farm in one year because hens finish their production cycle in one year. I have 25 hens, but my goal is to have 100 hens within the next two years.” – Catarina Pérez Hernandez.
“I have learned to become a businesswoman; we have learned to keep track of our production, costs, earnings, and we are saving money. This is great support for 25 women in my community.” – María Velasco, an egg producer in Xexuxcap, Nebaj, Quiché.
The egg businesses networks will remain long after the CLD project concludes as women will continue to be productive, save, renovate, and increase their hen population providing communities with stronger economies and the means to lead their own development efforts.