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Around the world, we see creative, industrious men and women committed to providing for their families and serving their communities through meaningful work. In this year’s gift catalog, we’ve included some of the tools HOPE International-network clients use in some of the most common jobs in the developing world: animal rearing, farming, tailoring, and store ownership. In this series, we’ll dive into some of the challenges faced by those in that profession.

In the Dominican Republic, they’re called colmados. In the Philippines, they’re called sari sari stores. In Paraguay, they’re called dispensas. In Rwanda, they’re called boutiques. No matter the name, the corner store is a staple of life in developing countries.

Ubiquitous on many a corner in many a community, small convenience stores sell household essentials like flour, soap, cooking oil, and more. For families living in more rural areas, a corner store allows them to access the items that their households need without spending excess time traveling to larger cities. And since many families in developing countries don’t own a car, their local colmado or sari sari store saves them the expense of taking public transit.

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