Crestine Carson worked as a nurse in New Zealand for eight years, but she knew that her paycheck would not be enough to give her family a stable life when she wanted to move back home.
After years of work, Crestine decided to go back to the country. And the turning point in her life came when she discovered that a simple holiday in the Philippines could cost the OFW a great deal of money.
“I heard OFWs do that. They have no money in the bank and they go home to the Philippines..or they bring home their savings as an OFW and spend them all,” she said last June in an interview with entrepreneur Bo Sanchez.
On the basis of this experience, Crestine agreed to prepare for the long term and set up a business with her five sisters, “I wanted to stop helping just by giving them money.”
At first, the money burnt a hole in her wallet after many unsuccessful attempts to set up a cellphone buying and selling business.
“It’s really painful. If you’re an OFW, you’re earning 6-digit figures abroad,” she added.
In 2013, Crestine and her sisters opened a shake and smoothie venture in front of their home in Pagadian city, Zamboanga del Sur.
“The product was really yummy so people started to queue,” she said.
After four years, their business has now grown to 33 branches throughout the country, including Cebu, Sultan Kudarat, and Davao.
Crestine published an electronic book in June entitled “How I Stopped the Habit of Remittance Yet Helped My Family More” to inspire fellow OFWs with their story.
“We had big dreams yet started really small… I feel that I found a deeper mission as an OFW/immigrant. As we grow our business, we want to share our success with other OFW/immigrants and their families,” she said in the book.
Visit crestinecarson.com to know more about her business.