Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Buchi King Owners Speak at TEE Opening Night

Christian Caparas, co-owner of Buchi King restaurant, speaking before micro finance workers from 
several countries during the TEE training in Tagaytay City, Philippines.
Alvin Abaja speaks of how he (along with cousin Christian) started Buchi King after he had a vision of himself
making buchi. 

Alvin Abaja and Christian Caparas, co-owners of Buchi King, a restaurant in Binan, Laguna, shared the story behind the  success of their growing business during opening night of the third Transformative Economic Empowerment (TEE), an international training session for micro finance workers.  

Alvin and Christian, who are cousins, manage Buchi King along with Christian's mother, Rosario Caparas.   Rosario is a pioneer member and micro finance recipient  of the Center for Community Transformation Savings and Credit Cooperative branch in Binan.

The cousins spoke of how they started their business after Alvin had a vision, during the pastoral prayer at their church one Sunday, of  himself making and selling buchi.  Soon afterward they started selling buchi to office mates and church mates.  When orders grew, they both resigned from their jobs with private corporations to be able to focus.  They opened the restaurant in December 2012. 

The  signature product of Buchi King is buchi, a ball of glutinous rice stuffed with a variety of fillings.  Traditional fillings are macapuno (coconut), ube (purple yam), and sweetened  mung bean paste.  The innovative cousins have made their buchi a hit with such fillings as cheese, sweet cream, chocolate, and white chocolate.  The restaurant also serves rice meals, pasta, and Chinese noodles.

Aside from being micro finance recipients, the Buchi King owners have benefited from CCT’s mentorship program where  Christian businessmen offer time and expertise coaching fledgling business owners in both spiritual and business matters. 

The TEE training where the cousins shared their testimony was a joint activity of CCT and the Ka-Partner network, a consortium of US-based organizations ministering to the poor. Attendees were from Peru, India, Moldova, Zambia, Kenya, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Uganda, and the US.  

The founding members of the Ka-Partner network are endPoverty, Five Talents, Hope International, and Peer Servants.  

Ruth Callanta, CCT founder and president, said the training session allows the sharing of CCT’s best practices and stories, benefiting the poor of other nations.  

Participants in the TEE training session during opening night of the week-long activity. 

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