Meet Maria


For Maria, life has been easier since she joined Grameen America. For 22 years, she has owned her hair salon in Los Angeles. Sparked by a desire to grow her business, Maria became a member of Grameen America as a recommendation from a friend already in the program.

Initially, Maria rented space at a local salon. As her client base grew, she decided to start her own business and now has a space all to herself. She has a set roster of clients that regularly come to her, often requesting haircuts, color and perms.

Maria’s involvement in Grameen America has meant she can hire staff to diversify the services at her salon, which now includes nails, facials and different hair services like ombre, a popular trend for hair coloring. She currently has three full-time employees.

Maria used her first loan of $1,500 to invest in marketing promotions to attract more business in her community to go to her salon. With her most recent loan of $4,250, Maria completed a three month refurbishment of her salon, where she purchased new chairs, mirrors and equipment. Maria hopes to use her next loan to update the shampooing station and invest in more merchandise to sell to customers.

Since joining Grameen America, Maria’s credit has been positively impacted, where previously she did not have a credit score. After completing on-time repayments for six Grameen America loans, her credit score is now at 650.

Maria has three children, one of whom works in the salon with her. In the future, she hopes her children will take over the salon and continue to grow the business.