In the spring of 2007 Dave Hermann challenged his Management students to raise money for their requisite project. With the involvement of the students and the community, the projects were a complete success. The first semester the classes raised $32,000. The University partnered up with DanPer in Trujillo, Peru to complete the project. DanPer is a company whose product line includes: asparagus, mangos, peppers, and canned papaya. They were selected because they are a native company that has a social responsibility element to their business. Part of the agreement we have with DanPer is that only those who are associated with the company are eligible for funding. This has become beneficial because DanPer can apply pressure to make sure the loans are paid back.
In conjunction with DanPer, the non-governmental organization named Sembrando Futuro (Sowing the Future) was formed. It was officially given tax exempt status in December of 2007. This is important to understand since it obtained this status 6 months after funding was promised. It is also indicative of how arduous the legalization process in Peru can be. Responsibilities have been divided between the two organizations, and AMA (Asociación de Mujeres en Acción) was brought in to teach the introductory business classes. DanPer was charged with finding and qualifying Peruvians who would be eligible to receive instruction and funding of their businesses.
In the summer of 2007, students participating in the Business college study abroad in South America visited with the groups to further qualify them for loans. This took place in Huancaquito Bajo, Peru. At the end of the business plan analysis, a vote took place and three of the four groups were given the promise of funding. Not long after this, the program encountered some complications with legalizing the businesses and sending the funding to Sembrando Futuro. It took almost a year to overcome those complications. During this process input came in from all sides and the program was adapted so that the same mistakes would not be made in the future. Through these changes our micro-lending program became the Small Enterprise Education and Development program.