This is Yolanda, who is 54 and a resident of Pasay City, Philippines. She is married to Raniel, a laborer, and is the mother to their children. She, together with her husband, manages their household while operating the business. At this time, she is working hard to continually provide income for their everyday expenses.
Yolanda runs an “ukay-ukay” business. “Ukay” literally means to “dig out” or “hollow out” from a stack or heap of anything. In Yolanda’s case, she is selling used (but not yet worn out) clothes that are usually stacked up on a table or mat. Some special kinds are displayed on hangers. In the Philippines, especially in urban poor communities, many people resort to buying used clothes from “ukay-ukay” stalls. These are much cheaper compared with brand new clothes sold in malls. Since Yolanda’s stall is located in an urban poor public market, her business flourishes. She earns a minimum of 300 Philippine Pesos (PHP) net sales every day.
To help her expand the business, Yolanda is requesting a PHP10,000 loan to buy additional used-but-quality clothes. Customers are attracted to buy from an “ukay-ukay” stall with lots of clothes to choose from. She plans to add more pants or jeans, and also used bags and footwear. If she can roll the profits from this loan, she can meet the customers’ demand. Through proper management of capital and profit, she can expand her business and boost its income.
Yolanda hopes to to give her children a good future and a high quality education through all her hard work on her business. She faithfully meets up with her co-fellowship* members to share stories of her work every week, and this is where she can also draw strength and inspiration from the word of God she studies.
* All CCT community partners / clients are organized into fellowship groups that meet on a weekly basis. A fellowship group is composed of 15 to 30 community partners. The fellowship groups gather each week to study the word of God, build social capital and pay microfinance loans.
About the Center for Community Transformation
The Center for Community Transformation (CCT) is dedicated to the development of communities and lives via spiritual transformation and access to financial services. CCT offers loan products to address the needs of micro-entrepreneurs in the Philippines. The organization’s loan products include small business, education, and housing loans. CCT utilizes a community-based approach to provide a variety of non-financial services that include training and development programs, clinics, disaster relief operations, a low-cost medicine program, and social service programs. CCT offers a unique “Pavement Dweller” program designed to provide food, housing, and job training. CCT also provides education support services to the poorest groups in the Philippines. Find more information about CCT on their website or join their lending team.