Here’s to Hapinoy’s success with continued support from MasterCard

Boost for ‘nanays’ in the Philippines with MasterCard’s continued support of Hapinoy

Meet Joy Sallan, Marina Reyes and Maribel Tolentino – the ‘nanays’ (Tagalog for ‘mothers’) who I met recently in Manila, capital of the Philippines.  They represented the over 1000 nanays who have undergone business literacy and business skills training with Hapinoy.

Hapinoy equips women with the knowledge, tools, and resources to run sari-sari stores—small neighborhood convenience stores or retail-based outlets that are a source of livelihood among the underprivileged Filipinos.  The social enterprise was the winner of the first Project Inspire challenge in 2011, and with a grant of US$25,000, they developed a 10-month training program on inventory management, customer relations, visual merchandising, and cash flow management. The grant also allowed the social enterprise the opportunity to design and implement an incentive framework for their beneficiaries, reach out to more communities, and forge partnerships with LGUs (local government units), cooperatives, corporations, and other potential partners.

In recognition of the excellent work that Hapinoy is doing for these women SMB owners, MasterCard has made another round of financial support amounting to $25,000. This additional funding will help Hapinoy put up 500 more stores, and expand operations in Bicol, one of the country’s poorest regions, and the areas of Visa­yas and Mindanao.

I listened to Joy, Marina and Maribel tell their stories – of why they started their sari-sari shops (to supplement the meager income of their poor households and the challenges they faced – (inventory control, pilferage from their own family members, over-extending credit to their neighbor because they simply could not say ‘No’).  I heard how with the help of some simple business skills training, they improved cash flows for their daily sales by 24 percent, dropped pilferage significantly to less than 10 percent and narrowed down credit extension to their neighbors.

As a result, their overall lives have improved – their children stay in school and dream of becoming engineers and entrepreneurs; their relationships with family members have improved, and most importantly, these nanays have gained self-confidence.   They now want to expand their businesses, taking on new products to sell.

Joy, Marina and Maribel are paying it forward and are teaching disadvantaged women across the Philippines how they can start their own sari-sari shops and make a better life for themselves and their families.

I can’t help but think to myself, that while I admire the very successful female CEOs running multi-million dollar companies, we can also learn a lot from Joy, Marina and Maribel and the millions of unsung heroines around the world.



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