DSWD livelihood grant helps family health workers start detergent, cleaning solutions business
CEBU CITY, Philippines—Recognizing that what they earn as family health workers (FHW) could not sustain their needs, six women decided to avail of a livelihood grant from the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) to start a business.
At one time, the six women were receiving honorarium of P100 a day or P2,50O month.
To augment their earnings, they planned to just become a dealer for the detergent products of Reneria Martinez, a neighbor who had been making detergent products.
However, the DSWD staff suggested that instead, they form a group to engage in detergent making business so they could avail of a grant under the agency’s Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP).
Arsenia Ranoa, president of the Mabugnao Kamputhaw Distributor (MKP) SLP, recalled that she and five BHWs then formed a group together with Martinez so they could apply for a livelihood grant.
Fortunately, the newly formed group, composed of seven members, received a grant of P70,000 (P10,000 for each member).
“She (Martinez) was generous in sharing her knowledge in making the products with us,” Ranoa told CDN Digital.
On October 2019, the MKP SLP started making detergent and liquid cleaning products, she added.
The members earn salaries when they took turns in making their products, according to Ranoa.
The members also get commissions from their individual sales, she added.
At present, the group produces 300 kilos of detergent powder every month.
Their primary market included their neighbors, friends and acquaintances, Ranoa said. But their goal would be to have a wider market.
She admitted, though, that they have to improve their packaging to be able to expand their market reach.
According to Ranoa, on her own, she already has dealers who market the group’s products in Minglanilla, Talisay City, Carmen and Ronda.
She explained that she first distributed samples of their products to introduce these to potential customers.
Ranoa invested in a sealer and material to improve the packaging for the detergent products, which would then be sold outside Cebu City.
She has stopped working as FHW and has been concentrating on their business.
The group’s dream, however, is to have better packaging for their products. In the future, she said, they would ask for assistance from Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) to improve their products.
“Our goal is to expand our business and provide employment in the future,” Ranoa said. /bmjo
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