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“En Via Tour, the Highlight of My 2 Weeks in Mexico” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Fundacion En Via

Fundacion En Via
Avenida Juarez #909 | Colonia Centro, Oaxaca 68000, Mexico
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Certificate of Excellence 2014
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Attraction details
Owner description: En Via is a non-profit microfinance organization working to fight poverty around Oaxaca, and to educate travelers about the power of microfinance by connecting them with local women either through visits to their towns, or through our volunteer program teaching free English classes to women and children. On the visits, travelers meet women who are applying for micro-loans to start or expand their small businesses, from making tortillas to weaving beautiful rugs, to selling flowers in the local market. Participants hear about the women's lives and projects, and what they plan to do with their loans. At the end of the day, 100% of the fee is then used to give interest-free micro-loans to the women we visited.
Columbus, Ohio
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“En Via Tour, the Highlight of My 2 Weeks in Mexico”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 6, 2014

What a terrific organization! Small loans are otherwise unobtainable by these small, women-owned businesses. The En Via microfinance loans make it possible to grow the businesses, thereby improving the lives of the women and by extension, their families and communities.

A small group of us tourists were able to see these effects first-hand: Weavers showed us the yarns they used, how they made natural dyes for coloring then wove beautifully-patterned rugs in original designs. A sweet and personable shop owner led us through her thought process when her well-located store suddenly faced competition right around the corner. I was honored to be able to purchase a rug, representing a solid week of a weaver family's work, and chips and a bottle of water from the shop owner.

Many thanks to the En Via staff for their efforts on behalf of the organization and their time helping us to meet and better understand the hardworking business owners. If you, the reader, are visiting Oaxaca you should definitely sign up for this tour!

Visited February 2014
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263 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
3 attraction reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Great experience! ”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 4, 2014

I've made the tour to the two villages Abasolo and Teotitlan del Valle last week and learned a lot about the organization of the local communities and the women we've visited who received loans from the organization. It is a great idea to support these women with micro financing and I'm still impressed how hard this women work for their project. I can only recommend to participate in this foundation and to join the tour!

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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
West Hartford, Vermont
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
4 attraction reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“Real Oaxaca”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 3, 2014

My friend and I thought this tour was such an incredible experience, and it felt like we were contributing back to a wonderful culture in need of support. Thank you, En Via for providing this experience. We met such incredible women that we never would have met without the tour. I am so grateful that there is a program such as En Via to provide assistance to women wanting to move ahead in their lives to provide for themselves and their families. I was so impressed by Kim, Samantha, and Saskia in setting up the tour and providing the guided tour. I think it was the highlight of my visit, and I would encourage anyone visiting Oaxaca to take the tour. As a bonus, I purchased a few beautiful rugs that are extra special to me as I met the weavers in Teotitlan.

Visited February 2014
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seattle, washington
Top Contributor
173 reviews 173 reviews
18 attraction reviews
Reviews in 39 cities Reviews in 39 cities
72 helpful votes 72 helpful votes
“this is a must do. Inspiring, educational & fun! what more would I want?”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 24, 2014

We LOVED our afternoon with en Via. Seven of us piled in a mini bus and headed to first a weaving town, where we ate mole negro in front of a weaver's shop, followed by her business presentation. After a stop at a sweet church we marched to another weaver who educated us on the wool dyes, and then to a third weaver, who worked in wool and cotton. Each explained how their tiny En Via loans were heping them expand slightly. We ended with a tortilla maker in an extremely rural village. En Via provides a well run "tour", if that's the right word, and introduced me to women with great compassion and respect. A wonderful 5 or 6 hours of our time.

Visited February 2014
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Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Up Close with Women Rising!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 21, 2014

As an active member of Dining For Women, and an author, I know a lot about women's empowerment, but seeing it for yourself is invaluable. This tour was informative, respectful of the women, well-arranged, and something I will always remember. En Via does great work, and I really appreciated learning the nitty gritty of their lending portfolio and practices. The idea of "diversified income stream" made so much sense after visiting oaxaca with its exceptional artisans, so many of whom do pretty much the same thing as the others and drive prices down for everyone. They really need access to bigger markets, and tourist on the tour do have the opportunity to buy crafts from the clients we visited though that is not the purpose of the tour. It is hard to design for a market with which they have no contact. Hope they will add laptop sleeves to their reperatoire!
PS I am going to include the En Via tour in my upcoming book 100 Under $100: the Women's Global Toolkit under Microlending. It is most unusual, to have a tour open to the public.

Visited February 2014
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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