Life and its crashing waves

Posted on May 2, 2022

Having to build from scratch again is no walk in the park. Working hard to achieve something significant, only to see it be washed away by life’s whim. As it happens in everyone’s life at some point in time, people only have two choices; to stop and give up, or to keep moving forward.

Maxima Natanauan’s story is an example of a woman who did not let life’s playful whims keep her down. With her fighting spirit, she was able to keep her business and family above water. And with a suggestion of a caring friend, she was able to steer her family and business to a comfortable life.

As a mother seeking to provide her family, Maxima turned to entrepreneurship. In 2009, she established her sari-sari store. Steadily managing it to the point of having three stalls, she was able to provide for her family and generate employment for others. As one would say, she was on her way to a steady and comfortable living. But life had its own plans.

In 2015, as typhoons were wreaking havoc in the country; Maxima was also struck with tragedy. Due to internal problems, the business took a financial hit. Left with literally an empty store, she naturally had worries concerning her family’s finances. Then, a friend came in with a suggestion.

Her friend introduced CARD SME Bank, a thrift bank under CARD Mutually Reinforcing Institutions (CARD MRI, to her. With the goal of poverty eradication, CARD SME Bank supports Micro, Small, and Medium Entrepreneurs (MSMEs) through financial assistance, with the hopes of improving the economic landscape of the country.

Although with hesitation, Maxima summed up the courage to join. “Hindi ko naisip na maaprubahan ang aking application, dahil walang laman ang aking tindahan”, Maxima said, alluding to the membership process. “May puntong walang laman iyong aming tindahan, na ako lang ang nakatayo,” she added. Little did she know that that would be her first step to recovery.

On June 10, 2016, she received her first loan. Without expecting or stating any amount, she was surprised to receive an amount close to a hundred thousand pesos. She never expected that CARD SME Bank would approve her application and that the bank trusted her capabilities as an entrepreneur.

With her loan, she used it to revitalize her business. As her business grew, so did her loans. Using her resources wisely, she was able to bounce back from her setback years ago. Now, she can provide for her family, as well as continue expanding their entrepreneurial endeavors. Besides her store, she now has an apartment for rent.

Talagang naglakas lang ako ng loob para sumali, kasi walang-wala kami noong panahon na iyon. Kaya laking pasasalamat ko sa tiwalang binigay ng CARD SME Bank. Dahil sa tiwalang iyon, nasuportahan ko ang aking pamilya, napalago ko pa ang aming negosyo,” said Maxima.

CARD SME Bank provides MSMEs with accessible financial and non-financial products and services to help them develop their businesses. To know more about CARD SME Bank, visit their Official Facebook page at @CARDSMEBankOfficialPage.