ON A recent trip to Iloilo, Jeannie Javelosa, chief visionary officer of GREAT Women (the acronym for Gender-Responsive Economic Actions for the Transformation of Women) — a platform that supports women for economic empowerment through microenterprises — visited a weaving community and noticed that production speed was slow. The older weavers said that poor eyesight made it difficult to work.

“We can help enhance the productivity of our weavers by having their eyes checked and giving them new eyeglasses. We had wondered why our GREAT Women weavers were so slow and realized it was because many of the older weavers could not see anymore,” Ms. Javelosa said.

GREAT Women focuses on the sustainable supply chain of yarns, textiles, lifestyle apparel and gifts. It works closely with 40 weaving communities including indigenous communities, nationwide.

As a way to help the community of weavers, restauranteur Trish Panlilio opens its third culinary collaboration with GREAT Women at Mulberry Door in BGC, Taguig City.

“We are happy to be partnering with the GREAT Women platform, because our rich indigenous Filipino culture is something to be proud of and its preservation is something that we openly ought to support,” Ms.Panilio said in a press release.

In line with the collaboration, 20% of the proceeds from selected dishes in the existing menu of Mulberry Door will be donated to GREAT Women to help in providing eyeglasses or spools of thread to the Bagobo Tagabaw and lbaloi community weavers.

The selected dishes from Mulberry Door are Chipirones, Bone Marrow Onion Soup, Mushroom Chicken Asiago served with Sourdough Bread, Callos with Garlic Baguette, Luca’s Chicken Kiev with Mashed Potatoes, Eggplant Parmigiana with Ciabatta, and Lemon Carbonara.

“We need to find meaning in our collaborations, in the kind of work that we do and the cause we support,” Ms. Javelosa told the press over lunch on Oct. 16.

The collaboration runs until the end of December.

In celebration of National Indigenous Peoples’ Month, Shangri-La Plaza will host the People’s Pride Cultural Fair, a pop-up trunk show in partnership with GREAT Women on Oct. 24 to 27 at the mall’s East Atrium. The event will showcase food and craftsmanship of Filipino indigenous groups such as the T’boli, Yakan, and Maranao.

“You cannot be a great woman kung cute ka lang (if you are just cute). You are a great woman when you are helping others and in the process, you become empowered,” she said.

Mulberry Door is open daily from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. at 8 Forbestown Road, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig. For more information and reservations, call 8810-5427, 0918-998-7474, or 0977-412-8002. — Michelle Anne P. Soliman