Faith and business: Donatos carving images for decades
Carlo S. Lorenciana (The Freeman) - January 12, 2015 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines - When she started carving Sto. Niño images way back in 1978 with her husband, Carmen Donato decisively believed she could create her own shop and help other people.

This, despite what skeptics have to say, mostly her neighbors who doubted that she could make it to the top -- becoming what she is now.

Donato, 53, now owns R&C Donato Sculpturing Shop which supplies images of Sto. Niño and other religious icons to various mall establishments in Cebu and a shop at the Basilica Minore del Sto. Niño de Cebu.

RCDSS, owned by Donato family from Talisay City, is also a manufacturer of religious items in Visayas and Mindanao.

The woman described her beginnings as humble, saying her family started the small business in their house and employed only a few workers including carvers, molders and painters.

“What we did was that we added new items every year and we were really focused on our goal,” she told The FREEMAN in Cebuano when asked how her family was able to grow the enterprise amid the circumstances.

“Sa wa pa mi shop kaniadto, gina-house to house namo pagbaligya ang mga images ni Sto. Niño,” she shared.

The Donatos only spent less than P10,000 as capital to source raw materials and sculpting materials.

As years went by, Carmen realized she had to build connections with local shopping malls and other stores in Visayas and Mindanao regions to retain them as institutional buyers. The statue manufacturer is the supplier of religious icons of Gaisano malls. Its religious items are priced from P25 to as high as thousands of pesos.

“Partner gyud mi sa akong mister sa tanang paninguha ug siyempre pag-ampo gyud sa Ginoo,” she said.

Donato and her 62-year-old husband Roberto take pride of their ‘humble’ business which sent their five children to college who are now all professionals.

“Sa tinuod lang, kinahanglan gyud nga naay fighting spirit para molampos gyud ka sa negosyo, focused ka ug maningkamot gyud ka,” she said. Most of all, she believes the Holy Child -- the Sto. Niño -- has always been behind in their success.  (FREEMAN)

 

BASILICA MINORE C DONATO SCULPTURING SHOP CARMEN DONATO CEBU DONATO HOLY CHILD STO TALISAY CITY VISAYAS AND MINDANAO
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