At a young age, Nanay Unie learned how to sew. She used her skills to provide clothing repairs for people in her community of Anda, Pangasinan, an island municipality in the northern part of the Philippines. Despite her sewing talents, Nanay Unie was unable to significantly contribute to her household income. A mother of 3, her family needed more than she could provide by repairing clothing. Along with a group of women in her community, Nanay Unie attended and graduated from the Partners Worldwide Microenterprise training, where she learned redemptive business practices, how to increase sales, and more. When they finished the training, Nanay Unie and the other women received business grants from Convoy of Hope, a local partner of PW, to help them launch their businesses.
Putting Knowledge to Work
Inspired, Nanay Unie visited the local market, where she noticed how shoppers purchased eco-friendly tote bags to carry their items. Spotting an opportunity, Nanay Unie bought a bag and brought it home, where she studied it. Then, using recycled plastic—a material readily available in her community—she created her own bag that was stronger than those sold at the market.
In addition to her tote bags, Nanay Unie accepts customized orders for string bags, pouches, and other products that she can make using her sewing machine and God-given talent. She even receives wholesale orders from the government! During these times, she employs women in her neighborhood to help clean, dry, and cut the materials. As her business expands, Nanay Unie hopes to share her skills with others, perhaps even mentoring others to run their own successful businesses. Her determination to help others and positively impact her community is truly remarkable and is a perfect example of PW’s mission in action!
A Community of Sisters
Nanay Unie isn’t the only entrepreneur in her town. The other women she studied with have gone on to start their own businesses, raising hogs, goats, chickens, and cows; growing rice; producing Mango Vinegar; and more. In addition to providing for their families, these gifted women have formed a community called Mother’s Club in which they support, encourage, and pray for one another, each sharing the desire to see their sisters flourish.
Your Gifts Change Lives
Your continued support for PW equips people like Nanay Unie to impact their communities every day. Thank you for joining us and our partners as we strive to end poverty for good.