Twenty two CARD members of Cambabang 2 center in Barangay Cambabang, Western Samar had the chance to interact with the media partners of CARD MRI who at the same time are participating in a study tour program of CARD called lakbay aral held in Tacloban, Leyte and Basey, Western Samar on April 22-23, 2015.
Media participants attended the weekly center meeting of the center as part of the lakbay aral’s activity. The exposure aims to let the participants gain firsthand experience in CARD MRI’s actual implementation of microfinance program.
“Cambabang is very lucky to have media personalities as visitors. They have been visited by different people from CARD and its partners but first time for a media group. I’m glad they are able to witness the unique center meeting of CARD,” shared Albert B. Avila, Area Manager of one of the areas of CARD, Inc. in Samar.
“CARD sets a model for community organization, a model of rural development. This kind of model should be co-created,” shared Minerva BC Newman, Regional Director of Philippine Information Agency region 7, when asked how she sees CARD’s strategy in community organizing.
Cambabang center was just established on April 10, 2014, five months after Typhoon Yolanda. According to Avila, many centers were organized in Samar right after the super typhoon, which means an increase in CARD’s membership.
During the visit, Cambabang center members raised their need of livelihood training, particularly soap making. In response, Avila assured that another series of trainings will happen in the area not just in Camababang but for the rest of the areas in Samar especially those who were not able to attend on the previous training schedules.
CARD had been conducting several enterprise developments training in Samar before and after Typhoon Yolanda, through CARD-MRI Development Institute (CMDI), the training institution of CARD MRI.
The center chief of Cambabang, Nanay Lonie Estuita, also said that she and her center were so blessed to have the media as visitors. “They gave us hope. We are looking forward that our center will be able to produce a soap, which will be named after our center – Cambabango Soap,” Nanay Lonie added. The idea of Cambabango Soap as name of their products was suggested by Minerva Newman.
“CARD always listens to its clients and are responsive to members’ needs. I am sure that Cambabang, and every CARD members are being heard. I also thank the management for having this kind of lakbay aral,” Avila concluded.
According to Dr. Jaime Aristotle B. Alip, the Founder and Managing Director of CARD MRI, the study tour program called Lakbay Aral affords every participants (internal or external) a better understanding of the mission and vision of CARD MRI and how they contribute towards the attainment of the mission goals. It provides a forum for peer sharing and learning, thus promoting the value of excellence in both their economic and moral spheres. It is hoped that the program will also bring delight to its partners.
For the past years, CARD MRI has been conducting lakbay aral for its staff, members and stakeholders. This is the second time CARD hosted a lakbay aral for media since 2014.