Friday, January 21, 2011

Global Partnerships Feature Entrepreneur: Edelma Altamirano—

Womentorz is so proud to be affiliated and support the efforts of Global Partnerships and all of the wonderful things they are doing for women around the world.  Our mission is to not only support women entrepreneurs on a national level, but also encouraging the entrepreneurial spirit on a global scale and Global Partnerships fulfills that mission!

About Global Partnerships

Global Partnerships is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to expand opportunity for people living in poverty. They do this by supporting sustainable solutions like microfinance throughout Latin America. What makes them unique is their focus on partnering with socially-focused microfinance institutions that reach people traditionally left behind—like women and the rural poor. Their partners also provide additional services alongside microcredit--including agricultural assistance, healthcare, and business training—to provide a stronger foundation for progressing out of poverty.

Global Partnerships currently work in 7 countries in Latin America and through their partners, they are serving 844,000 people.  For more information please visit their website at

Feature Entrepreneur: Edelma Altamirano

Edelma Altamirano of León, Nicaragua, is a mother, a successful business owner and a cervical cancer survivor.  Age 37, Edelma has been a microloan borrower with Pro Mujer, a Global Partnerships partner, for seven years. With help from Pro Mujer, she has built up a successful clothing resale business. She travels to Managua on public transportation to buy her wares three times a week and then travels to Honduras three other days a week to sell.

 Edelma credits Pro Mujer not only with helping her establish a successful business, but also with helping her build her self-confidence. She never dreamed she would be a leader, but now, as president of her village bank, she takes pride in motivating members of her group.

Perhaps most important, she says that Pro Mujer’s approach of combining microcredit and health services saved her life. In 2006, Edelma received a health screening offered at her village bank meeting. Her Pap test detected early stages of cervical cancer. Pro Mujer arranged for her to see a specialist and have a biopsy and funded her subsequent surgery. She is now in remission.

Edelma’s children are well on their way to securing professional careers: her daughter is in third year of pharmacy studies and her son is finishing high school. And because of the fact that Edelma received health care through Pro Mujer, they still have a mother.  Edelma, meanwhile, has added health promotion to her leadership duties. “I try to motivate and give strength to women who are experiencing what I experienced,” she says. “I tell women that they should have their yearly Pap, take care of themselves,
and not leave health for later.”
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