9 Lessons on Life, Work & Family from the Dads of R2R
Part of the village that it takes to create R2R pieces are fathers who help make the company’s culture a joy to be part of, and who are glad to have found meaningful work to provide for their families.
In celebration of Father’s Day, we sit with three R2R dads to talk about work, fatherhood, and some of the other things that matter (*wink*) to them.
Note: All answers have been translated from Filipino into English so that R2R advocates around the world will be able to understand easily.
BERNABE “BING” LOR
Kuya Bing, has been working as an R2R Workshop Artisan since 2014. He’s in-charge of cutting out fabric for bags and clothes.
Grab opportunities to do better.
“When the R2R artisan training was offered in our community, it was timely because I didn’t have a job then. I trained for three months and didn’t expect to be regularized at my age of 52. Joining the organization was a big help because before this, I wasn’t doing anything. This employment allows me to continuously support the needs of my family. Now that I’m nearing the age of sixty, I feel blessed that I’m still healthy and have the ability to work.”
Manage your resources.
“Part of our training here is a financial literacy program so we are taught to manage our personal resources. This mindset of practicality is also brought to the workplace as we are always reminded to be conscious about the materials we use. When I was new, I didn’t know how to save on cloth yet and later on learned that materials should also be used purposefully. We should learn how to effectively use each part so that nothing will be wasted.”
Set a good example to children and other younger people.
“I wish that each parent guides their kids to grow up to become good people. If you see them doing things that aren’t good, correct them while they’re still young so they will have a good sense of right and wrong as they grow up. More importantly, strive to set a good example because they will follow how you act around them.”
Kuya Ricky started as an artisan ten years ago and is now a Community Leader, in charge of distributing work among community members, providing mentorship and coordinating between the community and R2R HQ.
Have an attitude of gratitude.
“Here at R2R, I learned to be more grateful about every little thing: waking up, having people you can exchange stories with, being able to walk, etc. You don’t need to have many things to be able to enjoy life. It’s easier to enjoy the big things if you learn to enjoy the smallest things.”
Take pride in your work.
“I’m proud of our work here because we encourage being environment-friendly through recycling and upcycling. Before the pandemic, when people would visit the office, they would see that coming up with these products is not easy. Our rugs are really durable. I’m happy that people appreciate that our products are handmade and are of good quality. ”
Treasure your relationships.
“I’m happy when I get to see that people I teach improve through time. In R2R, we don’t just develop products but also develop and strengthen relationships. Our team is like the products we make––parts of it come from different places, but at the end of it, it becomes one. We’re like family.”
WILLIAM “YAM” ANG
Kuya Yam is a Sales & Marketing Logistics Officer. He joined as a messenger twelve years ago when he was invited by his wife Ate Sugar who joined R2R as a Sales Ambassador shortly before him.
Love what you do.
“You need to love your work and be happy doing it. This is important because your output becomes better and your workmates become good friends. I’m happy because R2R has helped me and my wife so much, especially financially––with our children’s schooling, food, and building our humble home. The company has helped not just us but also all the people we work with.”
Don’t take life too seriously.
“My workmates know that I’m always joyful, smiling, and telling jokes, even when they’re corny. This is because I enjoy what I do and I’m happy to be doing my work. I’m also joyful around my kids and I don’t boss them around. I’m happy-go-lucky, and I tease them and play with them a lot at home.”
Quality time is more important than material things.
“I hope that my fellow fathers stay strong and stay happy. This Father’s Day, whether or not a lot of food is served or gifts are given, I hope you get to celebrate with a complete family because that is what’s most important.”
Written by Meryl Ligunas