Misamis Oriental, Lanao del Norte MSMEs Acknowledge DTI’s ‘Mentor ME’ Program
“I was grappling my way into what I [was] doing, and because of the help of the ‘Mentor ME’ program, nasayun; natagaan og kahibalo (things became easier when I learned more about the process) and then with that, dako kaayo ang tabang sa ako sa pagpadagan sa among Negosyo (this helped me improve the way I run our business),” expresses Jamie Contreras, the owner of Contreras Soy Store.
Contreras has recently graduated from the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) “Mentor ME” program on 6 December 2016 in Cagayan de Oro. Along with her are 21 other entrepreneurs who went through two phases of seminars and trainings under the “Mentor ME” program in Misamis Oriental.
DTI selects and informs clients from the provincial offices’ existing portfolio to join trainings under “Mentor ME” Phase 1 which comprises courses on entrepreneurial mind-setting and values formation. The participants also acquires learnings on market trends, basic accounting and are introduced to the different ways to develop products. Subsequently, consultations are made by the provincial offices to decide who among the participants will get to join the next phase.
In Misamis Oriental, 22 entrepreneurs were selected and had the privilege to move on to Phase 2, the final stage of “Mentor ME” series of trainings which has advanced modules on operations management, human resource management, taxation, supply and value chain, financial management, contracts and obligations, and business plan development.
The Mentor ME (micro entrepreneurs) falls under DTI’s Negosyo Center programs. With a principle that entrepreneurship is the best alternative to job seeking, unemployment as well as working abroad, the Philippine Center for Entrepreneurship (PCE) partners with DTI to achieve the goals of the “Mentor ME” program. PCE pushes through their advocacy of building an enterprising nation by conducting summits, workshops, media fora, and producing books for micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs).
PCE and DTI works hand in hand in looking for Angelpreneurs, or leaders and motivators who are experts in their chosen fields, to provide skills and expertise training to DTI’s selected participants.
In Lanao del Norte, 16 mentees completed all 11 modules under the “Mentor ME” program. Fe Suico Melmida, the owner of Feh’s Sweet Products in Lanao, can only utter good words for her “Mentor ME” experience. She specifically pointed out how the “variable and fixed costs” course has positively helped her assess the financial clauses in her business.
DTI’s Regional Operations Group (ROG) Assistant Secretary Blesila Lantayona conveyed her highest hopes for the program through a speech delivered during the “Mentor ME” culminating activity in Lanao del Norte. “I have been to six (6) business improvement plan presentations and nakita nako nga very organized ang Region 10 (I saw how organized DTI Region 10 was).
I am sure that the next batches will be more organized, given the experience and the systematic approach done by DTI Region 10,” Lantayona exclaimed.
Meanwhile, one of Cagayan de Oro’s mentees, Nenette Tan of Bestfriend Goodies, was all smiles when she conveyed her appreciation towards the “Mentor ME” program. “I’d like to thank DTI for giving me the opportunity to be part of this program. I’m willing to share all my learnings to beginners. I would also like to encourage all the beginners to have the courage to step up, move forward, and be brave enough if you have plans to expand your business,” Tan said.