“Passion in Intricate Fashion”
Bernardina Javier, 55 years old of Pinagkawitan, Lipa City, Batangas is a very active client of TSKI’s OKEY Loan program since 2012. Her business is selling and rentals of gowns and barong Tagalog at Lipa City Public Market. Back then, Bernardina is just a simple mother who dreamt of a gown shop and have her three children obtain a college degree. Born in a poor family she was deprived of the opportunity to continue schooling after her graduation in elementary. With the goal of helping her parents she went to Olonggapo City to work. There she experienced vending banana cue and onion just to have an income. Later, she was able to work in an RTW shop as a sales lady. But when the US Airbase was closed Bernardina decided to went back to Lipa City in Batangas. With her uncle’s help, Bernardina opened an RTW store in the market. Their business grows well. And when she married Vicente she used their “sabog” wedding presents in cash amounting Php 7,000 as additional capital for the business. It was indeed a great help. The RTW business flourished. The unfortunate event in 1993 turned all their possessions and assets into ashes. In just a snap the public market was burnt by a raging fire leaving them with only one sack of the salvaged RTW. It was indeed the hardest time for the couple Bernardina and Vicente. “Mabuti na lang meron kaming Php 27,000 pesos na savings,” Bernardina used their savings to restart the business. They also went to the nearby municipalities of Rosario, San Pedro and Batangas City during market days to sell RTWs. Her husband’s salary as a veterinarian has also helped them recover from the disastrous event. When her RTW business is not doing well, Bernadina decided to diversify. She was indeed blessed when she came to know TSKI and availed a loan with the OKEY Loan program back in 2012. She was able to avail a Thirty Thousand Pesos (Php 30,000.00) loan. The amount she loaned was a great help as additional capital. It also paved the way in the attainment of her dream, the selling and rental of gown and barongs for all occasions. She has contacts with barong and gown designers and makers in the nearby province. And in case it doesn’t fit well to her customers Bernardina personally do the repair and adjustment. With her patience and perseverance her business flourished. “Gusto kong makatulong sa aking kapwa kasi naranasan kong dati ako ay walang-wala rin,” say’s Bernardina. Her patience and perseverance amidst the trials indeed brought her success. Bernardina’s strong faith and good heart is now reaping a good harvest. Currently, Bernardina has a huge display area in the Public Market of Lipa City. After she has fully paid her Php 130,000.00 loan for the 9th cycle, Bernardina renewed her loan and availed only Twenty Thousand pesos (Php 20,000.00) as additional capital payable for 3 months because the coming months are not the peak season for her business. All her three children earned a college degree. Her dedicated workers for years are still with her. The business has greatly helped not only in the schooling of her children but the children of her workers as well.