Challenges are expected in life. It is what we do with them that makes us as a person.

In the municipality of Talakag, Bukidnon, a beneficiary of the Sustainable Livelihood Program, dreamed of a better future for her children. Through her livelihood at Amper’s Nylon Crafts, Elenith Amper’s perseverance and hard work bore fruit as one of her six children graduated. Unfortunately, a massive hurdle hits her business financially. But instead of giving up, she fixated on reaching her goal: Seeing all of her children finish school 

Nanay Elenith as she weaves a black bayong

Opportunity Knocks

Elenith Amper, a 45-year-old mother of six, resides in Brgy. Isidro, Talakag, Bukidnon. Her husband was a laborer who earned 200-300 Php per day. Sadly, his work was not always done. This led to Elenith budgeting their money to survive for their daily needs.

She saw that the Big Hoop Charities, a Non-Government Organization, offered  a scholarship. She applied Mary Rose, her fifth child, for the grant. She was graced with the scholarship as Mary was in Grade 4. 

Moreover, the Foundation offered a two-day skills training on weaving. It consists of 14 participants who are women. At the end of the training, they were judged based on their skills. Elenith did not pass and was given a period to hone her skills without a trainer. 

With time, she was able to produce a single quality bayong in the span of two to three days. The charity employed her as they provided the materials and paid Elenith for the labor. She earns 120 Php per bayong that is sold. 

The pandemic came. The NGO’s resources were not enough; she went her own way. She bought her materials and gained 250 Php per bayong sold. 

Twist and turns

“Nagsuroy-suroy ko sa mga opisina aron mahilinan” Elenith stated as she recounted  her experience selling at Local Government Unit(LGU) offices when her husband had no income for three months. Then, the Sustainable Livelihood Program granted her the Livelihood Assistance Grant of 15,000 Php. The beneficiaries of this grant are the one s whose livelihoods  were affected. She used the money to buy materials that she would  be using. Elenith was back on track.

One day, a neighbor came up to her and suggested they  display their products at the GoNegosyo Center. Personnel  from DTI recommended that they should have a tag to brand their products thus, Amper’s Nylon Craft was born, and some of her products were sold at the GoNegosyo Center.

Amper’s Nylon Craft displayed at the DSWD’s Central Office in Manila

Amper’s Nylon Craft displayed at the DSWD’s Central Office in Manila

A few months after she started, a customer ordered a bulk of her product. Elenith was happy as 25 bayong bags  were ordered. She started making the request. Unfortunately, the customer canceled when she was about to finish the products . Her business took a turn financially as the bayong she made was  customized for the client. She was disheartened, but she thought about her children, her inspiration. 

“Maningkamot ta sir kay pipila bya ni sila[akong anak] intawon.” She recounts  who her efforts are for.  

Currently, she still sells at the Negosyo Center, and she went back to work for BigHoop Charities. She mentioned that she won’t accept orders for now as she lacks the needed materials . But she is optimistic that one day, Amper’s Nylon Craft will stand again on its own feet.