In consonance with the celebration of Women in History Month, the first batch of the Kapatid Mentor ME (MKKE) Online 2021 in the Bicol region consist of 48 women entrepreneurs, with eight of them from Catanduanes.
Last Thursday, March 11, 2021, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) provincial office led by Provincial Director Maria Belma Q. Escueta participated along with the Mentees in the business mentorship program’s Batch 1 launching ceremony via Zoom at the function hall of RHAJ Executive Inn and Apartelle in Gogon, Virac.
During the launching via Facebook Live, DTI Secretary Ramon Lopez and Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship and Go Negosyo founder Joey Concepcion cited the Filipino women’s role in both raising the family and engaging in livelihood enterprises or business.
Concepcion particularly pointed out the need for everyone to participate in the coronavirus vaccination program as the pandemic has not been conducive for business, thanking the Duterte administration for the policy of granular lockdowns in critical areas.
He said a bright future is in store for the country by next year, starting December 2020, as the Christmas season and the start of the election campaign starts boosting public spending.
“We should not help micro entrepreneurs see the light at the end of the tunnel along with helping banks have confidence in struggling businesses recovering as soon as the vaccination drive goes nationwide,” Concepcion added.
Philippine Commission on Women chair Sandy Montano remarked that programs such as the KMME highlights the importance of partnership and working together in providing access to money, market and membership for small entrepreneurs.
She said that the PCW sees women as active contributors and partners in development and will ensure that women workers will not be left behind in reaching for success.
In her keynote speech, Sen. Risa Hontiveros cited examples of women in business affected by the pandemic who successfully shifted their customer base online and recalled that in August 2020 she had called on the national government to fast-track its digital program for MSMEs to take advantage of the opportunity on social media.
In lauding DTI and Go Negosyo for the KMME program, the staunch advocate of women’s rights appealed to everyone to promote the buying of local products as a necessity, as the global supply chain has been disrupted by the pandemic.
On the other hand, Women’s Business Council chair Monette Iturralde-Halmin said the 10-module KMME course will boost access to the 3Ms, help them achieve competitiveness, provide an enabling environment and empowering spaces for women.
The KMME Online Batch 1 Mentees are Charis R. Solo of Charis Advertising & Printing Services, Cristina L. Torreda of Cristina’s Strawberry Farm, Judith C. Tolledo of JC Abaca Trading and Processing, Kareen B. Tesorero of EJ-KC Furniture Shop, Maria Tuzka B. Lopez of YBC Beauty and Wellness Shop, Michelle F. Morales of Island Foodshop, Rosalie R. Soliven of RLS Tailoring Shop, and Rosette T. Canlapan of Virtual Nook Computer Shop.