An Exceptional Entreprenuer

I recently returned from a fellowship with Esperanza International. This Microfinance institution serves over 18,000 clients in the Dominican Republic and Haiti.

I had been conducting interviews with loan recipients for a few weeks and had met many inspiring associates; one in particular stood out to me:

Armando was eight months old when his legs stopped functioning. His family was very poor and couldn’t access the high quality health care that he needed. As an adult, he was stigmatized for his disability and relied on the kindness of neighbors and fellow church members to provide for his needs. However, with the help of microloans from Esperanza, Armando was able to become self-sufficient. He opened an electronics repair shop out of his home and began repairing motorcycles and cell phones as well as selling refurbished parts. As his business grew, he took on three young apprentices. He showed me two textbooks that he used to teach the boys math and chemistry because he wanted them to succeed in case they decided to attend high school in the future.

Armando is a shining example of what a real hero is made of. He refused to let his disability define his life and with the help of microloans he used his skills and talents to provide for himself but also mentor and educate the youth in his community. Imagine how quickly the world would change if we all “pay it forward” the way Armando does every single day.