The Success of Ana Marie Lubrico from the Philippines

“Today my life is very different from before. There was a time when I was very sick and tired. Running my little eatery was becoming too difficult. I didn’t know what I would do to provide for my family. That was when I learned about Mentors Philippines. Today my health is much better, I have a successful business, and I am able to provide employment for three of my friends. I am very grateful for the Mentors Philippines organization. They provide hope to the hopeless.”

Ana Marie Lubrico grew up in the Lloilo providence in the Philippines. Her parents were very poor and with 11 children to provide for, Ana was sent to live with her grandparents. She wasn’t able to attend school, but she learned to cook, and she was a hard worker.

Ana Marie met her husband while they were both working in an electronics company. They started their family with each earning around Php 6,000 (about $114 USD) a month. Wanting to provide a better future for their three children, Ana Marie resigned and started a small eatery/food cart. Although their income was modest, they were able to provide for their children’s education.

In 2009, she started to feel too fatigued after a day’s work at the eatery. Worrying about her health, they decided to close the business and instead started making doormats for additional income. When Ana first started the doormat business she was making about Php 2,500 (about $50 USD) a month. That is when she learned about Mentors Philippines from one of our mentors.

She invested her first loan of Php 5,000 (about $95 USD) and purchased a second-hand sewing machine. Ana has continued to work hard and has learned many valuable lessons over the years from her mentors. She went from a one-woman enterprise to now employing three additional women. Ana now has secured wholesale deals where she delivers her finished mats in bulk.

Ana tells us, “My mentors taught me to dream big. To look for ways to grow and expand my business. Now I work in wholesale. I am able to provide meaningful work for my friends. One of the most valuable lessons I have learned is how to save part of my income. When I had a sewing machine break last month, I was able to purchase a new one using my savings.”

Ana’s income has gone from earning around $50 USD a month to earning around $1,000 USD a month. Growing and developing a business doesn’t happen overnight, but with hard work, dedication, the right mentoring, and help from some small loans Ana is enjoying the freedom that comes with self-reliance.

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