Hey Nation Builder!
Who am I?
I'm Danilo Ablen from the Philippines. I'm here in GoGetFunding in hopes to raise money to buy a secondhand pickup vehicle that I can use to deliver produce from the farms of Bulacan to the doorstep of homes in and outside Metro Manila.
I've been living in Baliuag and Angat Bulacan for all my life. While growing up, I saw buildings being built in our small town. I saw banks, malls and more people; despite the industrial growth in our town I noticed that the farmers of my town did not enjoy the industrial boom. In fact, many of the farmers I personally know only earns $2-$4 a week. This was a fact that I kept very close in my heart while I was studying Social Entrepreneurship in SEED Philippines ( School for Experiential and Entrepreneurial Develop), a TESDA accredited college that provides scholarship for the bright poor of this country. During my time as a student, I learned how to speak better English and French, thanks to the foreign interns I interact with on a daily basis in GK Enchanted Farm, where I live as a beneficiary with my family. This allowed me to gain confidence and faith in myself.
What do I do?
I also started a social enterprise called OhGK! Naturals, a natural respiratory and immune system booster drink that caters to health enthusiasts and anyone who wants a refreshing health drink that doesn't sacrifice the taste. I initially sold this drink in GK Enchanted Farm as it is a social tourism destination but I began to expand in bazaars and corporate selling- and the drink has always been well rceived. However, I decided to scale it up when the reality of the poor farmers was undeniable anymore. I began to aggregate the raw materials (Oregano, Honey, Ginger and Kalamansi) directly from marginalized farmers. Four ingredients means Four farmer partners that I provide an additional income of $15-$20 per week. Ever since we started this drink with my colleagues and an auntie from our community, I've gone to Malaysia, France and South Korea to share my story out of poverty and in local radio stations and newspaper outlets.
Nonetheless, as I begin to scale up and receive speaking engagements, I've started to face bigger problems- one of which are that my buyers would like to receive the drinks at a much closer location rather than head to Bulacan. These buyers go as far as the Baguio, Quezon Province and Batangas. I started to arrange deliveries in Metro Manila but I noticed that my vehicle rental and expenses are higher than my sales; hence, I began to aggregate fresh fruits and vegetables such as sweet corn, mangoes, langka from other farmers that I can bring with me when delivering. I've been doing this for almost 6 months now and I deliver in villages in Makati and Ortigas and in companies in Mandaluyong.
Why do I do what I do?
I currently work with 8 farmers on a weekly basis and I'm so amazed by how excited our farmers with the orders we've been receiving. I cut down the middlemen and in return, our farmers receive better income, our clients also pay lower for high quality produce and I get to expand my network and improve my health drink through client feedback.
What can WE do?
I've never thought a man like me who used to live under the bridge of Baliuag and ate leftover food from trash bins and cafeterias can deliver to the most exclusive villages in Makati and go to many places because of my dream of supporting farmers and ending my own poverty. I hope that by having our own pickup vehicle, I can go to more places that would like to order my health drink and fresh produce.
I will be happy to also meet up in locations in Metro Manila if you'd like to try the drink first!
Here are a couple blogs that reviewed us:
Radio Feature: https://www.facebook.com/dzrhnews/videos/177084327... (30:59 time frame)
BPI Account Number (Savings): 8219 1694 78 (please send us a screenshot of the deposit slip or payment so we can monitor via [email protected])
Merchant Account ID: Y6EJTALUKD6VS
Email address: [email protected]