Here's a short but very inspiring story of a Filipino domestic helper in Singapore who became her own boss as she managed to successfully put up a recycling business in Philippines and able to provide income to her family without leaving the country.
At the age of 19, she started working as an Overseas Filipino Worker (OFW) in Singapore in 1984 believing that she can be rich in just a matter of few months. But she found herself very disappointed during her career employment.
However, Bermudez didn't give up and made her way to be an entrepreneur when she went back in the Philippines. She put up her own business Lyneth Grace Metal and Boxes Junk Shop.
Aside from being a mother of three, she operates and manages her own recycling shop in Nueva Vizcaya and currently has a total of 23 employees (5 adults and 17 students) that help her gather junks from neighboring towns to be recycled.
Here's the short video story of Jeanilyn Bermudez entitled "Cleaning Up Like a Boss"
“Here in my village, I feel I am the big boss... Here, I'm the one who is telling, do this and that and they call me madam," Bermudez told Our Better World, a a digital initiative of Singapore International Foundation.
Because she is serious enough to make her business grow, she managed to prosper that she was able to buy three motorcycles to speed up collection and increase production output. She even gave the favor back to those who are in need such as food and clothing allowances to her employees.
Her own business puts her family into a better living situation and this provides them a steady cash flow (or income) as well as giving her a lessen workload as the sole family provider.
“This is my treasure, all the junk here. I'm very proud to have this junk shop because it makes me very happy, and helping people here in my village, especially these jobless people here and the children,” said Bermudez.
Aidha as part of her success
Bermudez was affiliated with Aidha, a Singaporean non-profit organization, when she was working as a domestic helper in SG. This organization teaches financial and computer literacy, business management, and entrepreneurship skills to foreign domestic workers.
According to the Aidha ambassador, Veronica Gomez, the biggest challenge for all their students is how to say "no" to relatives who asked for money. For Bermudez, learning how to do this was such as a big help for her.
Because majority of the students had "little or no savings," Aidha offers training on how to save earnings and how to start own businesses as well as to create a sustainable wealth.
The organization is giving two modules to interested domestic workers and they will undergo training for nine months. They ask for a small amount of fee which can be paid in six month installments.
And this Pinay maid was one of their students who became successful on putting up her own business in the Philippines providing sustainable income to the family without needing to go abroad far away to her loved ones. Instead, she now became her own boss.
Credits: Video story by "Our Better World"