By Lou Ellen L. Antonio
 
ILIGAN CITY, July 1 (PIA) — A beneficiary of a skills training program by Sumpay Mindanao Inc. (SMI) in partnership with Caritas Germany and sewing starter kits from the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) is now producing face masks.
 
Prior to the Marawi siege, Bedayah Balindong who used to live in Barangay Tolali, used to lend money to her sister-in-law to buy hijabs (headscarf for Muslim women) from other countries. She then sells them to her fellow ustad (Arabic language teacher). She also tried other businesses like loading mobile phones.
 
With the convergence efforts of SMI and DOLE, Balindong started to sew hijabs, bedsheets and curtains in Bakwit Village, Matungao, Lanao del Norte.
 
 
During the coronavirus disease (COVID 19) crisis, Balindong started sewing cloth face masks.
 
She can sew 50 pieces of double-ply face masks which she sells for P45 each while 100 pieces for single-ply sold for P35. She shared that she earns about P6,000 per month.
 
When asked what motivated her to pursue her business, she shared that she tried entering businesses in her capability for them to survive.
 
“Hindi po ako nawalan ng pag-asa. Hindi ako sumusuko. Lahat ng negosyo na pwede kong gawin ngayon ay sinusubukan ko para makaahon lang kami,” said Balindong.
 
[I did not lose hope. I did not give up. I tried entering those businesses which I can so that we can make ends meet.]
 

Bedayah Balindong expresses gratitude to Sumpay Mindanao Inc. (SMI) in partnership with Caritas Germany and sewing starter kits from the Department of Labor and Employment for the assistance she received.

 
She also shared that she did not mind the exhaustion, worn-out, and the difficulty of what she does for her business for the sake of my children’s future.
 
“Sa Sumpay Mindanao, maraming salamat sa malaking tulong na binigay sa akin.Tatanawin ko ito na utang na loob,” she added.
 
[To Sumpay Mindanao and DOLE, thank you so much for the great help. I will treasure this as an indebtedness.]
 
She also accepts orders. She can be reached through 09300522469. (LELA/PIA ICIC)