Supporting Henih’s Small Business Amidst Decreasing Sales

After schools were closed due to the pandemic, many snack sellers who run their hawkers at schools have not been able to work. Henih, a snack seller at Tirtawening Elementary School, Tasikmalaya, was among them. Despite the new policy that has hampered her livelihood, she does not give up. Now, she sells snacks and drinks at her own house although her income has decreased significantly compared to normal days.

Supporting Henih’s Small Business Amidst Decreasing Sales' photo
Henih (left) serving children who were buying her snacks at the patio of her house. Since the pandemic, she has not been able to sell her snacks at the school. Now, her main customers are her neighboring children. (ACTNews / Eko Ramdani)

ACTNews, TASIKMALAYA – Despite the scorching hit of the sun, residents of Cicondong Hamlet, Cibeuti Village, Kawalu, Tasikmalaya, were busy sacrificing and cutting up the qurbani meat in the front yard of Tirtawening Elementary School, Saturday (8/1). After a long time, finally the local residents could once again enjoy the beef from Global Qurban - ACT. Despite the hustle and bustle in the front yard of the school, Henih (38) was busy at her own house. She was preparing the ingredients for the snacks that she was going to sell.

Henih runs a small stall at her house in Cicondong. To make ends meet, she sells snacks and drinks to the neighboring children and the students of the nearby elementary school. However, since the learn from home policy was enacted due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Henih has lost many of her regular customers. Even in the “New Normal” phase, her sales are still decreasing.

"Since the schools were closed, my income has been significantly decreased,” she said when ACTNews team met her, Saturday (8/1).

Since 2014, she has been selling snacks such as jelly and fried snacks made of tapioca flour as well as sweet drinks. Initially, sells snacks and drinks to help her husband who works as an oddjobber and has no steady income.  

Henih's husband is currently unemployed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Many construction projects have been halted, reducing job availability. Now, her family solely depends on her small stall. In addition to basic needs, she also needs money to pay for the internet data for her children’s study. Every day, she earns a profit of IDR 50,000. Her income has been decreasing due to lack of buyers since she moved her stall to her house.

Henih standing in front of the building that will become her new stall. This simple building was funded funds by ACT's business capital grant. (ACTNews / Eko Ramdani)

Capital grant alms

Last June, Aksi Cepat Tanggap (ACT) provided business grants to women who run small-scale businesses in Cicondong Village, including Henih.

Located across her house, separated only by a small alley, a small building made of bamboo was built to be Henih’s new shop.

"The location is much better here because it is close to the busy main road,” explained Henih.

When the activities at schools have resumed, she will continue selling snacks at the nearby elementary school during school hours. Afterwards, she will continue selling the snacks at her new shop. She is grateful for the business grant alms from ACT’s Sahabat Usaha Mikro Indonesia (UMI) program. The business grant was very beneficial for her to improve her small-scale business.

Fauzi Ridwan from the ACT Tasikmalaya Program Department said, the new shop standing near Henih’s house is the manifestation of the community’s generosity channeled through ACT.

"This is all a manifestation of the community’s generosity that supports small-scale entrepreneurs amidst the faltering economy. However, there are still many women entrepreneurs out there who need assistance," said Fauzi, Saturday (8/1). []