Press Releases

Nowadays, it is no longer about "what are you wearing" but "who are you wearing?" It speaks of the product quality stamped along with the brand. With adequate resources, local brands could gradually catch up with the prominent ones.

It was "work as usual" for the seamstresses and seamsters at the Samahan ng Mananahi ng Pagsanjan shop on 17 February 2023. The organization received Php1 million worth of kabuhayan enhancement grant under the DOLE Integrated Livelihood Program. DOLE IV-A Regional Director Ma. Karina B. Perida-Trayvilla has been keen on reinforcing successful livelihood projects with additional assistance to grow into a sustainable business. It was the initial success of the group that convinced the office to give an extra boost by way of awarding additional materials and equipment.

From dressing up private and public employees with meticulously sewn uniforms, the group made strides in its latest project of making the national costume for shoppers in Baclaran. The new sewing machines, let alone the fresh rolls of cloth, were instrumental in making this venture possible. It was a timely intervention for the association striving to stay relevant in the market.


SAMAPA has been expanding its portfolio from bags, curtains, and bedding with young recruits that may bring something new. Even the President, Ms. Veronica Toledo, who is already in her senior year, is preparing to hand over the baton to her young successor. The group has several newbies starting as part-timers.

Among them is Angel, a second-year mechanical engineering student at Laguna University, who spends her free time sewing barong to augment her school allowance. She would report to school three days a week and spend the rest doing her side hustle. This newbie got the best mentor with her mother by her side. Still, she makes sure to take her time studying during the night.

Angel is not the only working student in the group. Two other seamsters are also currently enrolled under the Alternative Learning System. They attend school through modular distant learning to study at their own pace.

The group knows well that the young blood could contribute to the organization in one way or another. In the same way, the young ones could benefit from the example of craftsmanship and productivity from the veteran sewers. They can bring out the best in each other to deliver the best products in the portfolio.

DOLE Laguna Provincial Director Guido R. Recio has supported workers' associations working to sustain their economic activities. He has given the marching mandate to Ms. Lorena M. Gacosta, the livelihood provincial focal, to closely monitor livelihood beneficiaries for timely assessment of the necessary intervention. It is one way of promoting business viability and sustainability for enhancement opportunities.

Soon enough, SAMAPA will not only be the brand of choice of certain establishments and institutions but also of regular shoppers proud to answer the question, "who are you wearing?" this time around.


DOLE Laguna Provincial Office

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