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United Nations Refugee Agency's Refugee-Led Innovation Fund Winner

Izis is expanding her Açaí Store

28-year-old Izis Amorim owns an Açai Store in Rio das Pedras. She received a Bridging Gaps microloan provided by Athari Group. This is Izis’ story:

“I moved from another community to Rio das Pedras when I was very young, and I built a life here. I have been an entrepreneur my entire life. When I started my Açai business” Aloha”, I counted on the support of all my friends. A great friend of mine helped me with the logo, another one supported with face-to-face advertising and another one with the açai. Through this experience, I learned that growth is only possible together and I think it reflects my business and the impact I want to create. We are a young brand that wants to create a positive impact for young people and the LGBTQIA+ community. I have a deep understanding of the people of these minority groups and want to support them as much as I can.

My solution to the problem I identified in my store is to store non-perishable food and other materials that I use to sell the açai with. I could only buy these products on a weekly basis with higher prices. With the microloan, I am able to buy the goods in a bigger quantity, and at a lower price. Meanwhile, I can invest in marketing and advertising as well as infrastructure, so I am able to generate more income. Açai is the type of food that sells a lot in summer, so I want to budget ahead in order to be able to create a marketing campaign for next summer.

By creating a store of goods and raw material, I will be able to invest in other small changes in my business, as well as communication investments.

I will pay back the loan to my community in four installments, starting after three months.”

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