/ 22 March 2022

THE TECHNICAL Education and Skills Development Authority and Coca-Cola Philippines inaugurated a training facility that will help elevate the agency’s entrepreneurship training program for women micro-retailers.

On March 15, TESDA chief Isidro Lapeña, Coca-Cola Philippines President Antonio del Rosario and ASA Philippines Inc. President Kamrul Tarafder inaugurated the newly refurbished Tesda Women’s Center for Excellence for the agency’s upgraded Sari-Sari Store Training and Access Resources Program or iSTAR program.

The new training facility is part of the agreement signed by the agency and Coca-Cola Philippines in December 2019 which aimed to modernize the current STAR program by putting it into a blended digital learning platform.

Since 2011, TESDA and Coca-Cola have been partners in providing entrepreneurial skills training to over 200,000 Filipino women retailers through the STAR program.

The new iSTAR training consists of online self-paced learning sessions and business coaching sessions developed by TESDA and Coca-Cola to help businesses that were badly hit by the pandemic.

In his message, Lapeña expressed his optimism that the new developments in the iSTAR Program will have a great impact to the communities.

“We assure our partners that we will continue to closely collaborate with you in providing more opportunities to more aspiring ‘iSTARprenuers’ nationwide through entrepreneurial skills training,” the TESDA chief said.

Del Rosario shared that they are targeting around 20,000 retailers to be trained under the iSTAR Program.

“With your help, we are confident we can achieve this goal,” he said.

TESDA and Coca-Cola also launched the legacy book of the iSTAR Program and turned over laptops to its local implementing partners.