8-13-13 | Success Story
Behind every great student is a great teacher, and the success of Danys Ramirez Carazo’s students is evidence of his dedication and talent. With his support, SAT students have created four different small businesses to develop their own communities.
Danys has been involved in Fabretto almost his whole life as a beneficiary of the child sponsorship program and later as a recipient of a technical scholarship. Now, he gives back to Cusmapa and the surrounding area by impacting community development as one of Fabretto’s trained SAT tutors.
Early on, Danys and his students identified a community need: an electric mill for grinding raw food products. Although they were originally discouraged from pursuing the ambitious idea, Danys led his students through conducting a community survey and evaluation and, once they created a feasible business plan, petitioning the bank in Somoto for a loan. When the bank refused to give a loan to the students, Danys signed for the loan himself-even with a 23% interest rate over 4 years.
When asked how he decided to take on such a risk, he said, “The students need someone to encourage them, to motivate them. If I take on the debt, I’ll find a way to make it work, but they can’t get a loan themselves.”
But the journey wasn’t over yet–Danys and his students traveled over 8 hours with the students to purchase the mill, convinced the power company to run an electric line into the community, and finally installed the mill in the rural community El Carrizo. What makes all of that worth it? “The students feel great,” said Danys with a proud smile. “They can contribute to their families’ income now.”
The electric mill hasn’t just changed the lives of the student-owners and their families; it has also contributed to the formation of two additional businesses producing rosquillas (traditional Nicaraguan biscuits) and cajetas (a type of candy). Currently, another group of his students is testing a new product, the corn-based drink pinol, which would also use the mill.
Danys teaches his students that they can take action to develop their communities today with the resources that they have. And what about him? “What motivates me is contributing to the transformation of the community,” he said. Thanks to Danys’s vision and guidance, the students are doing just that.