For Jerrelyn Motargo, the end is the beginning, and the beginning is the end. It seems like she lived all her life at the terminal – the start and end station of a transport route in Davao City. She sees the comings and goings of buses. It’s a cycle, on repeat everyday, in this busy place.As a pasalubong vendor at the Davao City Transport Terminal, she jumpstarted her business years ago with a mere hundred bags of durian tarts. Now, she has gone big time. She presently supply tarts to many other small sellers of pasalubong food items. But, despite the long way she has come, she is still, at heart, a vendor.
“Sipag at dasal ang kailangan. Akala namin, walang magpapautang na malaking kompanya sa mga tulad naming maliliit na kooperatiba. Tumigil na kami sa pangungutang. Umunlad nang husto ang buhay namin. Ako mismo, gusto ko ring tumulong sa iba na umasenso.”
Jerrelyn went on to start the Davao Ecoland Small Entrepreneurs Multi-purpose Cooperative (DESEMELCO), which received a substantial loan from a microfinancing program for small businesses of cooperative members who also sell pasalubong items at the Davao City Transport Terminal. This opened the doors to success a little wider for the Coop members.
Jerralyn’s business ventures have evolved through the years. She has grown and prospered along with other DESEMELCO members. The durian tart vendor is now the proud owner of a durian tart factory, a condominium building, and a printing press. Ever prayerful and grateful for her blessings, she also helped build a church in her community.