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Improve your family's quality of life thanks to fish farming on your own initiative: Fish for Life supports all entrepreneurial women. Listen to his story. What a talent!

Ana Aguilera (and husband Juan Carlos Moreira)

“Our family's quality of life has improved greatly with fish production and with our restaurant specializing in grilled fish “Palacio del Tambaquí.” “We have economic stability.”

*“Before my husband stopped in the chaco. I wanted to work to help him, but my oldest daughter was still very young and I had to stay and take care of her. We have tried in several areas. We spent six years growing rice…to invest and there was little profitability.
One day, after listening to my mother-in-law talk so much about fish farming, and so as not to be left alone at home, I decided to accompany her to the meeting of her association APNI (Association of Northern Integrated Fish Farmers), and there I listened to the explanation of the CEPAC technicians and what the other partners were talking about. There I just saw it interesting, I got excited and signed up for the Association.
The fish farmers had difficulty selling their fish...At first it was very difficult, because it was not sold. I started a restaurant specializing in grilled fish - “Palacio del Tambaquí”, and we grew. We were marketers for about a year and a half, until we were finally able to build four ponds to produce our own fish.
Everything we sell is from our production and the local production of the fish farmers of Yapacaní. …we are fish farmers. …not only because it generates economic income, but also because it guarantees our supply of fish.
I have been a fish farmer since 2011, and I was president of APNI in 2012 and 2013. Thanks to the fact that I belong to APNI, I received training from CEPAC. I was also trained in fish reproduction at CEPTA in Brazil, thanks to the Fish for Life Project (PPV I).
The greatest satisfaction is that we have found economic stability, with the activity of raising and marketing fish. Definitely with our income, our quality of life has improved. Our children go to private schools, we can buy things we like, clothes, school supplies... In general, we are better than before. We make decisions as a couple, my husband and I talk before deciding.”*

Antonia Olpo Cruz

“I was one of the first people to dedicate myself to fish farming. “As a woman, it is an honor to be taken into account and to be an example for other producers.”

“I consider myself an entrepreneurial woman. I'm always busy doing something. That is why I always dedicate myself to various areas. I managed to plant 400 hectares of rice here in Yapacaní and Beni, but the price fell too much that year and I went bankrupt with rice. So I had to go to Spain to work. I left for two years to be able to pay some of the credit that was owed on the agrochemicals.

When I returned from Spain, I had no activity, and one day I heard on the radio that PPVII/CEPAC were giving fish farming courses. As I had seen sardines being raised in cages in the sea, I had the idea of cage farming in the river. I had the intention of fencing a part of the Choré River that passes through my plot….but the issue of the agrochemicals they use in that area made me hesitate…. So when I heard about those fish farming courses I went to sign up.

…I was one of the first people who dedicated himself to fish farming in this municipality. ..For me it was difficult, because the first year I planted, a polar cold came and killed half of my fish that already weighed around 700 g. There was no way to heat the water and I had to net everything because my fish were going to die. Then I bought a refrigerator and filled it with my fish and froze them. I wanted to sell them but people didn't know much about this species and they made fun of me. Since they were small fish, they told me: “this is going to be pacú, it must be piranha”… and I couldn't sell. Finally, for Bolivia's anniversary, I took my fish to the plaza and grilled them... that's how I sold fish!

Whenever there were courses at PPVII/CEPAC or other places, I attended. …I attended tilapia fish farming and fish processing courses. They taught us how to make meatballs, nuggets, hamburgers, etc. I am currently training as a Technical Assistant in fish farming with the Fish for Life Project. I participated in experience exchange visits in San Ignacio de Moxos, and I participated in the creation of the new Fishing and Aquaculture Law when it was made here in Santa Cruz.

My income has improved since I grew fish on more than 12,000m2, because in fact I have been able to have capital from fish to be able to resume this agricultural activity, rice cultivation. My children's school expenses, my youngest daughter's daycare expenses, daily food expenses, all of this is paid with the profits from the fish. Practically what I earn with rice only serves to pay my machinery loan. I support the rest of my expenses with fish.”