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Ana Nineth Hernandez

is a true visionary. A few years ago, most of her neighbors in San Juan de la Laguna worked in the unstable economic climate of harvesting coffee, living off less than $2 a day. Ana knew hope was possible, and was determined to find a solution.

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San Juan de la Laguna

is a quiet village that rests on the Western shore of Lake Atitlan. But though the land bursts forth with promise, poverty remains an obstacle to the many families depending entirely on their crops to earn an income.

Like most little Tzutujil girls, Ana learned how to weave on the backstrap loom from her mother when she was only seven years old.

The backstrap loom is one of the great prides of the Tzutujil people.

Its simple technology means that almost anyone can own a backstrap loom and that the loom can be set up almost anywhere. This mobility allows the weaver to work indoors or outside, at a neighbor's house or in the marketplace, while keeping watch over the children or while chatting with friends.

As Ana grew up, she longed to see more consistent economic opportunities come to her community.

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She saw that the tourists who visited the village loved the scarves the local women were creating, so she began organizing women’s weaving groups and soon became

a leading voice in her community.

Ana’s village specializes in natural dyes extracted from local trees and plants. However, the dye making process produced inconsistent colors. Ana knew that in order for her community to scale up their scarf production, they would need to produce a consistent product.

So Ana began a two year project to create a recipe book and scientific process that would help the women make consistent dyes, scale up their operations, and create a greater economic impact on the community.

Ana now trains women and owns a business where she employs over 30 female artisans in her community.

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These women earn far more than what their husbands make by harvesting coffee. With their additional income, many of them are now able to send their children to school.


She has 4 children and her husband’s earnings as a coffee harvester could not cover all the costs of their children’s school. Now, Concepcion invests all of her earnings in her children’s education, and her oldest is attending university.

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Ana would like to see even more economic opportunity come to her village.

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She is attending a masters program in business in hopes that her knowledge will help continue to grow the local economy. She wants all the children in San Juan to be able to study like she has.

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Noonday is one of Ana’s first customers to place a large order and she is grateful for the hope that has come to her neighbors through this sustainable income. She’s not stopping there, though! Always a dreamer, she says,

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“My plan is to grow this business to impact even more women in my community.”

When you purchase from Noonday Collection, you create opportunity for someone like Ana.

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Noonday Collection uses fashion and design to create economic opportunity for the vulnerable.