Ilocos Norte micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) affected by Typhoon Egay last July have been identified to receive livelihood kits worth PHP5,000 each.
Under the Department of Trade and Industry’s economic recovery-targeted program “Pangkabuhayan sa Pagbangon at Ginhawa,” the MSMEs are allocated sugarcane processing, food service, food processing, school supplies, barber shop, tailoring, furniture-making and dry goods retailing kits.
“Prior to receiving the livelihood recovery kits, the recipients have to undergo entrepreneurial seminar or business continuity training to capacitate them and be able to generate higher sales as they resume business,” Maricor Racela, senior trade industry development specialist and trade promotions officer of DTI locos Norte, said in an interview Friday.
The first batch, composed of 128 stakeholders from this city, received their livelihood kits on Wednesday.
The second and third batches are scheduled to receive their kits on Nov. 21 and 22 at the provincial capitol auditorium.
Previous beneficiary Nora dela Cruz of Barangay Cabungaan, Laoag City told the Philippine News Agency Friday that she produced more after obtaining a means to improve her source of livelihood.
With the help of the DTI and other government agencies, Dela Cruz’ sugarcane juice food products, specifically different variants of vinegars such as plain sukang iloco (llocos vinegar), suka with sili (spicy vinegar), and basi, are best sellers during trade fairs.
“I am so thankful to the DTI for helping me grow as a small-time entrepreneur,” Dela Cruz said, adding that she gained confidence because of the guidance of the DTI in developing and bringing her products before a wider market.
Since 2017, DTI has been offering free coaching and mentoring programs to Ilocos Norte entrepreneurs.
Known as the Kapatid Mentor Me, the program aims to guide MSMEs scale up their businesses through 10 weeks of one-on-one, module-based consultations and coaching sessions with business experts to help them become globally competitive enterprises.
Akin to a “big brother-small brother” concept, the program allows mentees to learn strategies on marketing, financial, human resource, and operation management, among others.
On the 11th week, the MSMEs are required to present their business development plans before graduating from the program. (Leilanie Adriano)