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Filipinos are enterprising in the time of Covid-19 pandemic
April 26, 2020
Micro-Entrepreneurship thrives during this COVID-19 enhanced community quarantine period
My sister, Noemi Lardizabal-Dado, lives in a gated community in Pasig City. The residents cannot get out of the village without a quarantine pass. Not everyone has cars. There is no public transportation available.
She informed us that online service businesses are thriving within the neighborhood. Our cousin, Margot, had alerted her about these micro-entrepreneurial efforts.
For example, at this facebook-based (private group’s name not disclosed) Marketplace, she bought kimchi, a face shield, chicken, and vegetables. Within the village, there is FREE delivery.
Noemi reports: “Filipinos are very enterprising. People are doing services. Today I bought two electric fans, vigan longganisa, carrots, and other veggies. They sell prepared meals and merienda. Freshly-baked bread. Kakanin. Binignit. Lumpia. Fruits. Someone sells shrimps. Fish. Mussels. Korean food. Even rubbing alcohol. Someone provides cleaning services for air conditioning units. Pet food also!”
Noemi says that there is a huge demand for work-at-home computer tables and chairs.
“Pabili” services (Errand Services such as “Buy/Get this for me and deliver to me, please!”) are thriving in these communities. Ex. Pa-grocery, Pa-bayad bills, Pa-bili. (Errands such as to do grocery shopping, pay the bills, buy something for me.)
One of her enterprising neighbors collects pizza orders and delivers them. C.O.D. (Cash on delivery) basis.
The honor system works because if buyer or seller don’t fulfill their promises, the whole group knows about it (without mentioning names). This is called the “shaming” system. Everyone is a good neighbor.
Noemi believes that “this is the best definition of ‘community’, sharing resources and not just a group of people living in one place.”
I am posting this inspiring update so we can think of more ways to encourage our micro-entrepreneurs and small business owners to think outside the box. It’s not always thinking about economic recovery (hoping for the best) that matters BUT also about the possibility of an economic apocalypse (preparing for the worst).
There are many private facebook groups for each village but there are public Viber groups for the National Capital Region. The residents share updates there on where to buy food, situation of groceries, concerns on their areas etc. These are some of the Viber groups.
Residents Community Viber Groups. Please comment below if you know of others
I really want to be known as the secretary of the San Francisco Filipino American Chamber of Commerce and the executive secretary of the San Francisco-based Philippine American Press Club. I am a contributor of Blogwatch and positivelyfilipino.com The about.me/radiantview has some choice wordings.