When the EBY team set out to cover Nicaragua for its beneficiary country for the months of December and January, they didn't intend to focus on stories of domestic violence. It became clear, however, as the women’s stories unfolded, that they shared gruesome tales of escaping violence at the hands of cowards and narcissists who squandered away their money, their confidence, and their patience.
This destruction of self-esteem hinders self-sufficiency. A microloan is an exit out of this circumstance.
Telling the stories of these women--the ways in which they’ve flourished since receiving their loan--became even more crucial when the EBY team suffered several setbacks upon arriving in Masaya, Nicaragua, to meet with Blanca and Francisca, two of the women empowered through EBY’s partner, Opportunity International.
Upon arrival, the EBY team was held in customs for hours, one by one, until all of their camera equipment was confiscated. They realized the country was coming out of a communist regime and that the right to freedom of speech did not exist. During the night, the EBY team worked together to find local equipment and a crew to join them the next morning for their shoot. At the airport for their departure, negotiations had to be made to transport the team home. The experience solidified the team’s efforts, shining a light on the resilience of women who have worked tirelessly to overcome obstacles.
Blanca’s words continue to serve as an inspiration, “As long as you keep your eye on the goal that you have decided to fight for, you will get there.”
From Our Eyes To Yours
I compare myself to the toughest kind of wood I work with: guachipilín and chocuao. They don’t get pests; they put up with the heavy rain and bright sun, and they remain intact. I’ve endured great storms in life, but I’ve remained strong and continued fighting.
I started working when I was eight years old. My mother would tell us, “As long as you are making a living, nobody will take advantage of you. You will not have to put up with anything or anyone.” We worked hard, my sisters and I, and we covered the rent and food for the younger ones.
I fell in love with my first boyfriend. He would say things to me that I wasn’t used to hearing from other young men. My mom disapproved of the relationship, so I left my home with him.