Aklan's lady entrepreneurs to "star" in Women's Month celebration
by Venus G. Villanueva
Kalibo, Aklan (25 February) -- Recognizing that women are an important resource who can contribute to the reduction of poverty, the province of Aklan will be paying homage to its priceless wealth - the Aklanon women - when it celebrates this year's Women's Month next month.
March is observed as Women's Month, and this year's theme is "Babae, Yaman Ka Ng Bayan!" (Woman, You Are Nation's Wealth).
According to the 2009 Women's Month concept paper, it is timely to tap half of the country's resource, the women, and create a gender-responsive environment to encourage and support them to venture into high-value and more meaningful economic activities and enterprise development.
The theme also supports the fulfillment of the country's international treaty obligations, particularly Convention of on the elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW), the Millennium Declaration, and International Labor Organizations (ILO) conventions.
It is also in cognizant of the Arroyo Administration's Ten-Point Agenda and the Medium-Term Philippine Development Plan (MTPDP) 2004-2010 which identifies the creation of three million enterprises and ten million jobs, with women as the main target of micro-finance initiatives.
Invited as guest speaker at the launching program of this year's celebration on March 11 at the Daeangpan it Mga Kababayenhan it Akean" as the unanimous choice of the Aklan Gender and Development Commission (AGADC) is Ibajay Mayor Ma. Lourdes Miraflores.
AGADC, created to oversee and plan programs and projects in the province to benefit women especially the disadvantaged ones, is chaired by Aklan Governor Carlito s. Marquez
Mayor Miraflores, besides being the wife of lone Aklan Rep. Florencio T. Miraflores, is a banker-entrepreneur in Ibajay, Aklan and a mother of three.
Another lady entrepreneur invited to deliver an inspiring story aimed to further spur Aklanon women to be entrepreneurs is Roselita "Rose" Sauza of Rosa Foods, who started her meat-processing business with P200.00 capital in the late "80s.
More than 20 years later, Rosa Foods is now a by-word in the food-processing sector of the province, with outlets located in big markets, in Boracay Island and malls in Panay Island. Its products even reaches the farthest parts of the country, brought by impressed buyers and food lovers who buy and bring the products as "pasalubong" or consumption.
Other activities which will be held during the launching program are the motorcade, Holy Mass at the Kalibo Cathedral, ARISE business forum for wives of OFWs which will be spearheaded by PESO-Aklan, and DTI, and free pap smear for indigent women. (PIA) [top]