Empowering urban MSMEs in 43rd episode of ‘Stories for a Better Normal’ Series

April 27, 2021

Empowering urban MSMEs in 43rd episode of ‘Stories for a Better Normal’ Series

MANILA, 27 April 2021 — Entrepreneurs of the trendy Poblacion area in Makati will gather virtually to raise awareness on how local businesses are advancing environmental sustainability and preservation of cultural heritage on the 43rd episode of “Stories for a Better Normal: Pandemic and Climate Change Pathways,” with the topic, “Makati Poblacion: Empowering Local.”

The episode, hosted by three-term former Senator, now Deputy Speaker Loren Legarda, will air on Thursday, 29 April 2021, 10:00 AM via Facebook Live at facebook.com/CCCPhl and facebook.com/iamlorenlegarda.

Joining the online conversation are young entrepreneurs Samantha Nicole Samonte, Programming Director of Futur:st; Rachel Harrison, owner of Zambawood Private Event Space; Architect Jed Yabut, a rattan artist; and Chef Christine Zarandin, founding chef of Wantusawa Oysters.

In previous episodes, the online series tackled the role of micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs), particularly in the areas of traditional weaving and crafts, pottery and brickmaking, coffee production, and bamboo propagation, in providing environmentally sustainable and viable livelihood options to communities, while preserving cultural heritage and local craftspersonship.

This episode will highlight the collective efforts of entrepreneurs to bring Poblacion back to life, and make it the urban center and bright spot of hope for arts, culture, and environmental sustainability by reshaping the district’s identity amidst the pandemic. It will feature local spaces that support and empower homegrown brands and artists.

The COVID-19 pandemic and the associated quarantine measures took a toll on MSMEs, which comprise 99.5% of business establishments in the Philippines and employ about 63% of the country’s workforce. According to the Asian Development Bank, 70.6% of MSMEs surveyed in the Philippines were forced to temporarily close due to the COVID-19 outbreak. As the lifeblood of the Philippine economy, MSMEs should be adequately supported to enable them to bounce back greener and more resilient.

As an online discussion to promote health, environmental consciousness, and climate-adaptive practices, “Stories for a Better Normal” aims to change the mindset of individuals, families, and communities by demonstrating ways in which a ‘better normal’ can be realized within our communities.

This online discussion is organized in partnership between the Climate Change Commission and the Office of Deputy Speaker Legarda, with support from the Department of Education, Philippine Information Agency, Institute for Climate and Sustainable Cities, The Climate Reality Project-Philippines and Mother Earth Foundation. ###