The Foundation for a Sustainable Society Inc. is proposing a bill on social entrepreneurship as a poverty reduction program of the country with the poor as the primary stakeholders, Heidi Charlize Fernandez, advocacy and communications specialist of FSSI, said Monday night.
Fernandez said they want President Benigno Aquino III to make this his program for poverty reduction and that they need to get the support of the legislators and policy makers to pass the bill.
“The conditional cash transfer of Aquino is not enough, we need something sustainable and we need to touch base on the enterprise level,” she said.
FSSI wants the government to play a major role in pushing for this change since government has the resources that it can provide to the industry in exchange for the social values that these social entrepreneurs give to society, she also said.
The program is not a dole-out project but it empowers the communities to stand on their own, she added.
Glaiza Veluz, FSSI program officer, said that FSSI provides financial assistance to organizations in the form of loans or grants. They provide assistance for capacity building, training, and initial capitalization, she said.
The amortization depends on the cash flow of a certain organization and the interest will depend on their appraisal, however, their interest rates range from 8 to 11 percent, Veluz said.
Josephine Locsin, owner of Tumadok Crafts said, FSSI was the non-government organization that helped them when their factory in Bago City burned down in 2003, while Eva dela Marced, executive director of Broad Initiatives for Negros Development, said that FSSI has worked with them in terms of providing credit for organic farming.
Meanwhile, FSSI has already assisted 15 organizations in Negros Occidental, mostly in the form of grants given to small community enterprises. *LTG