Patricia Tarrillo

My name is Patricia Tarrillo. I am originally from Lima, Peru, and I would like to tell you the story of the dream of an immigrant, who like many others came to this country with grand ideas and a desire to achieve a better future. I began working with aluminum in my country as a hobby, among family and friends, while I went to school to study architecture, but when I came here I thought that it would be a good idea to share the great Pre-Incan history of my country with the rest of the community. And thus I was lead to NEDCO’s office. They believed in my project and from there my little business, Andes Art, was born. I started in the summer of 2003 with a lot of fear at the beginning; I made only 20 boxes at first, of which I sold 19 on the first Mercado Latino. Aside from providing me with the extra income, my business brings me happiness and pride in being able to share the history of my country and my ancestors. Every Sunday, the comments of people who stop by my booth give me extra desire to continue looking for more locations to sell my products. In September 2003, I found out about a program that helps small businesses like mine, VIDA. The program consisted in me developing a business plan, taking financial literacy classes and saving towards a goal for my business. When I first heard about it I couldn’t believe it was real, but it was a program of NEDCO so without doubting too much, I started the program. After 7 months I achieved my goal with the help of 3 great people, (Sandy, Debbie and Molly) who believed in me and in Andes Art from the beginning. I was able to buy a vehicle that enables me to transport my products to different events and two banners for my booth. For this reason I am here today to give testimony that with hardwork, perseverance and the help of organizations like NEDCO and the VIDA Program that you can reach your goals. Thank you, Mercado Latino Patricia Tarrillo Graduated June, 2004

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