Bukidnon entrepreneur wins nat'l biz award for Mindanao

MALAYBALAY CITY (MindaNews/03 October) — A micro-entrepreneur from Manolo Fortich, Bukidnon won the search for 2010 National SIPAG (Sustainable Income for People in the Agrarian Grassroots) of the National Livelihood Development Corporation, the Bukidnon Cooperative Bank (BCB) announced.

Fidela E. Tudtod, 44, a resident of Dicklum, Manolo Fortich town, won the award for Most Outstanding Microentrepreneur for Mindanao.

Tudtod is a client of one of BCB’c microfinance projects with agrarian reform beneficiaries.

Ronel Pama, BCB Manolo Fortich manager, told MindaNews Tudtod demonstrated remarkable experience as a small entrepreneur who has so far expanded her business.

Tudtod started as a cashier of the town’s RMN Quiño Enterprises. She served the company for six years.

Her husband was content on earning a fixed income as employee but Tudtod wanted to work harder to have their own business. She quit her job to start a corn farm and later opened a sari-sari store.

While farming and running the store, she engaged in the buy and sell business, offering ready to wear (RTW) items to office employees.

She accessed the NLDC’s SIKAP (Sariling Impok Kita at Pag-asenso) in 2007 via BCB. She availed of an initial P10,000 loan and made sure she paid her dues on time.

“Success will not just happen, it is up to you to make it happen,” the BCB quoted Tudtod as saying in a document used in the evaluation of the award.

Through hard work, BCB cited that Tudtod was able to expand her small business and acquire more property.

The mother of three has grown from a mere employee to an employer of at least four persons.

In recognition of her business acumen, BCB upgraded Tudtod’s credit line from P10,000 to P50,000. She was also given an additional service via Small and Medium Enterprises Credit Line of P 500,000.00 at a special interest rate to help her in expanding her business.

Salcedo Joey A. Cortes, resident of Malaybalay City and Account Officer of BCB, also garnered a Special Citation, given on September 24, 2010 at the SMX Convention Center, Mall of Asia Complex, Pasay City.

The SIPAG Award is given annually by the NLDC to recognize and promote as best practices the remarkable achievements of its microfinance partners and individual clients.

In selecting nominee/s, the following requirements must be at least in the third loan cycle under the NLDC livelihood lending program, 18 years old and above, an active client of the nominating institution with a repayment record of 100 percent for current and previous loans and the enterprise or livelihood project being managed should be operating for at least three (3) years as of December 2009, and should be in good standing in the community.

The awarding ceremonies were led by Prudencio S. Garcia, President of Mekeni Food Corporation and Keynote Speaker, Gilda E. Pico, Landbank President and NLDC Chairman and  Gondelina G. Amata, NLDC President. This is participated by all partners of NLDC in the cooperative, non-government and rural financing sector all over the nation.

Other awards given are Most Outstanding Rural Financial Sector (national award given to Peoples Bank of Caraga, Agusan del Sur), Most Outstanding Non-Government Organization (national award given to Alalay sa Kaunlaran, Inc., Nueva Ecija) and Most Outstanding Cooperative (national award given to Gata Daku Multi-purpose Cooperative, Misamis Occidental).

NLDC is a government-owned corporation formed in 1981 to actively pursue a package of livelihood and enterprise development programs and interventions to hasten socio-economic growth in the countryside especially in the hard-to-reach agrarian reform communities (ARC). The NLDC serves sectors at the bottom rung of the economic ladder by making financing available to them and also by engaging them in capability-building programs. (Walter I. Balane/MindaNews)