Archive | January, 2019

Ambulong SLP Association: The Extra in the Ordinary Banana Chips

In line with the objective of the Sustainable Livelihood Program to create an enabling environment for accessing income-generating opportunities to address basic needs, the scheme of the program is to create a group called SLP Association that will manage a microenterprise. One of the major challenges the program faces is the sustainability of operation of the SLPA itself. In the project implementation stage, beneficiaries are challenged to be continuously capacitated towards self-governance and sustain the operations since there is a limited access to technical assistance, which can be associated to the geographical location and terrain of MIMAROPA. Technical experts and resource persons are challenged to reach beneficiaries from far-flung areas which affects the timely and efficient delivery of services.

In the aspect of marketing the products, most of the microenterprises have no appropriate branding and packaging for their products. Thus, there is a challenge in meeting the standards of the competitive market nowadays. Thus, the Ambulong SLP Association of Brgy. Limon Sur, Looc, Romblon focused on addressing this concern.

Womenpreneurs of Ambulong

Ambulong SLPA is a 100% women-owned business composed of 20 members engaged in banana chips processing. It was funded in November 2017 under the Seed Capital Fund and Cash for Building Livelihood Assets amounting to a total of PHP 245,000.00. Before the implementation of the program, most of the members worked as vegetable vendors and housemaids earning PHP 3,500.00 to PHP 4,000.00 a month. There were also housewives who wanted to earn extra income to support their families.

Upon market analysis, the SLPA identified banana chips processing as a viable livelihood considering the abundant resource of banana in the municipality. They built a small processing center along highway where they sell their products.

To further improve their skills in the chosen microenterprise, members enrolled in series of trainings involving techniques in banana chips processing. After a few months of operation, they have already acquired assets including additional tables and kitchen utensils. They can also afford to purchase bigger quantity of raw ingredients such as sacks of sugar and liters of oil.

Good Practices Leading to Improvement 

Product Enhancement

  • The banana chips became thinner and crispier. They replaced the existing cooking oil they use with the one of a better quality. Though the replacement is a little expensive, customers’ feedback on banana chips is more favorable.
  • After the training, the number of flavors of banana chips increased from two to five. Flavors include Original, Sweet, Salted, Sour Cream, and Pandan.
  • Based on the customers’ feedback, the use of wood than LPG in cooking results to better and tastier banana chips.

Product Packaging

  • The association outsourced a graphic artist to create the official logo of the product.
  • To maintain the crispiness of banana chips, the association sought the technical assistance of DTI to improve the packaging from the ordinary clear plastic sealed through heat sealer machine to resealable plastic pouch.
  • The packaging has label that includes the (1) manufactured and expiration dates, (2) ingredients, (3) weight, and (4) promotional ad of the product.
  • The SLPA has already secured barangay, mayor’s, and sanitary permits. It has also been a CSO-accredited association since 2017. DTI has shown its unwavering support through the provision of packaging and labeling of banana chips that is product-appropriate and bear relevant information about the product.

Lessons Learned

  • The quality of a product is critical in satisfying the customers, thus a business should always maintain the highest possible standards.
  • Always consider the feedback of customers. This will help improve the quality of a product.
  • Food safety and sanitation in a food industry should not be underestimated.
  • Having the right marketing strategy is important to promote and sell the products.

Implications for Replication 

The initiative of the SLPA to seek for technical assistance form external partners/agencies that can potentially contribute to the development of a product is very commendable. Members should find experts who can help provide new knowledge and skills to the project participants.

Microenterprises should prioritize product development and product packaging. Other associations can also outsource an expert to create their own logo and packaging. Also, associations must secure all the important documents to avoid inconvenience in business transactions.  These include business permits, Memorandum of Agreement/Understanding, Constitutions and By-Laws, and many more. ###

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in #SibolKabuhayan, #SibolNegosyo, Good Practice, Sustainable Livelihood ProgramComments (0)

Aksyon ng Pantawid Pamilya upang bawasan ang basura

Ang mga naipong plastik ng mga benepisyaryo ay ginugupit at isinisilid sa 1 litrong bote ng plastik

Boac, Marinduque – Upang makatulong sa pagbabawas ng basura sa kapaligiran, ang mga benepisyaryo ng Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program sa iba’t ibang baranggay ng Boac, Marinduque ay nangolekta ng mga balat ng tsitsirya at iba pang plastik na hindi naibebenta upang gawing mga ecobricks.

Sa isinagawang Family Development Session (FDS) ng Pantawid Pamilya ngayong buwan ng Enero, itinuro sa mga benepisyaryo ang paggawa ng ecobricks bilang kanilang aktibidad sa kanilang paksa sa Waste management and ecobrick-making. Upang makabuo ng isang ecobrick, nag-ipon ang mga benepisyaryo ng mga balat ng tsitsirya at iba pang plastik na kanilang isinisisiksik sa isang litro ngg bote na walang laman. Naglalayon ang aktibidad na ito na mabawasan ang dami ng plastik sa kapaligiran at sa kanilang mga tahanan. Ang mga plastik na naiipon ay kanilang ginugupit at isinisilid sa isang plastik na bote upang maging matigas. Magagamit ang mga ito sa paggawa ng mga bagay na kapakipakinabang katulad ng mga upuan at mesa.

Tuwing araw ng pagpupulong para sa FDS, bitbit ng mga benepisyaryo ang kanilang mga naipong ecobricks upang mamonitor ng mga Municipal Link o City Link ng Pantawid Pamilya. Ayon sa mga benepisyaryo, ang paggawa ng ecobricks ay sinasabing nagdulot kaagad ng malaking pagbabago sa kanilang pamamahay at komunidad. Dahil sa kanilang proyektong ito, wala nang mapapansing kalat sa kanilang kapaligiran dahil halos lahat ay nangongolekta ng basura. Maging mga bata ay nag-iipon at kumukuha na rin upang ibigay sa kanilang mga magulang. Ang iba naman ay ginagawang libangan ang paggupit ng mga plastik na inilalagay sa mga plastik na bote. Bukod sa nakakatulong ito sa kapaligiran, nagbibigay rin ito ng kalibangan sa mga benepisyaryo.

Ipagpapatuloy sa susunod na buwan ang kanilang natapos na mga ecobricks at pagpaplanuhan kung ano ang kanilang maaring buuin gamit ang mga ito.

Contributor: Ezra Mae Par Pelaez

Posted in UncategorizedComments (0)

Making Melody in the Life of a Single Mom

Retail industry is a thriving business nationwide, particularly in rural areas. One type of retail is the convenience store, usually put up in or near the owner’s house, that proves the ‘convenience’ and practicality of working at home.

The PPMC Women’s SLP Association is an organized microenterprise managing a convenience store in the municipality of Sta. Fe, Romblon. The women-led association is composed of 20 members from four barangays – Pandan, Poblacion, Mat-I, and Canyayo hence the acronym PPMC.

Melody F. Ocampo, 20 years old, is the youngest member of the association. She is married and blessed with three children. Her husband has an irregular job while Melody tried her luck in business as she lent capital from the lending service amounting to PHP 10,000.00 that she used to put up a convenience store beside her small nipa house. 

After few years of living together, Melody and her husband separated. She was left alone to raise the kids as her husband did not provide any support. An opportunity opened to her when the association was organized. She received a Seed Capital Fund which she used as an additional capital in her existing store.

Later on, Melody put up another store along the highway. She rented the lot for PHP 250.00 a month. Years passed and her store gave her a profitable income. Aside from paying her debts from the lending company, she decided to expand her store by selling vegetables such as squash, eggplant, sitaw, and okra.

Business expansion did not end here as Melody ventured in retailing of feeds where she saw the demand for it. She even sold gallon of purified water. “Lahat ng pwedeng ibenta at pagkakitaan ay susubukan ko makaraos lang,” she stated.

At present, Melody has already invested in many things including her concrete house, motorcycle, and tuition fee of her kids. Melody is very thankful for the opportunity given by SLP. She has proven that the capital given by the government can be effectively utilized through proper planning, hard work, and perseverance. Melody, a versatile business woman, is an inspiration to other solo parents out there not to give up easily.  ###

Contributor:

Lina Phie Macatubal, Project Development Officer II, Romblon

Posted in #SibolKabuhayan, #SibolNegosyo, Sustainable Livelihood ProgramComments (0)

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