Myrna and her husband, Guillermo, met while she was in high school and married after graduation. They lived in a bamboo hut with a roof weaved from coconut leaves. Myrna didn’t want to raise her children in such a flimsy and vulnerable house. In 1992, she set out to help her husband support the family and started a piggery in their backyard with her PhP1,000 loan. She bought lobsters and shrimp from fishermen and sold them to wholesalers in the city. Soon she was moving 20 kilos of crabs/lobsters and 50 kilos of shrimp a day. Myrna was thrifty, reinvesting in their businesses and spending money only if needed. She saved up to buy tools, equipment and vehicles to support her growing business. In 2002, the couple decided to venture into farming, investing in standing cane and trading rice. In 2004, they leased 10 hectares of sugarcane land, 2.5 hectares of rice field, and half a hectare of a nipa (palm) plantation. Two years later, they purchased 1.2 hectares of the sugarcane plantation valued at PhP400,000. They’ve amassed 17 fishing boats, a dump truck, a ten-wheeler truck, a six-wheeler truck, and a Canter to sustain the operational demands of their businesses. Myrna realized her dream of building a safe and sturdy home for her family. Although she and Guillermo have been teaching their children the business in the hopes that they will run it in the future, they still dream of seeing all six of their children graduate college.

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