Veronique Celestin: From pickles selling to owning a snack

Date: July 4, 2019
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I had started working as a gardener and my boss was keeping unused small glass jars outside on his terrace and asked me if I could give it to someone. Infact, there was a tamarind tree in the yard and I collected the tamarind and I brought it home along with the small jars. I decided to make pickles with the tamarind and kept them in the glass jars. I’ve always loved to cook and this keeps me busy and gives me happiness.

I had a friend who sells artisanal products and one day she randomly asked me if I had anything to sell. I gave her one jar of the tamarind pickles I made and she gave me Rs 50. This is when the idea of entrepreneurship clicked and this is when I took it seriously.

I continued to sell the pickles and then I got more orders via mutual friends. I started to make cakes and then I started to sell in on my tricyle and then I opened a small snack in front of my house. I applied for a loan and then I started building the small snack infront of my house very nicely. I upgraded my list of menues, and added fried noodles, breakfast items and many other small snacks.

My business level has grown and now I have a nice well-known snack and today, even tourists come to my snack for breakfast and I also prepare ‘Roti’ during the weekends.

My daughter works with me and helps me with the cooking. I have upgraded my life and I am happy that my business is booming. I adjust the prices of my snack items as per the cost of living- typically I tend to increase the prices by Rs 5. I must agree that the support given by Gender Links has allowed me to grow as a person and motivated me to do more in my business. This is now my income generating business and my daughter is also taking the lead on entrepreneurship.

I would have never wondered that selling a small pickle pot would make me become an entrepreneur owning a well-known snack today. My personal experience with my husband has very much improved as well. I am living a good life, I must admit and I am forever grateful to Gender Links.

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