Where can you find Shirley? Managing our entire plant or... planting! Shirley loves to garden in her spare time. She doesn't have much spare time, though, because she is our plant manager for all of what happens in our production plant.
Before coming to Dignity in January of 2011, Shirley was a teacher and later the Principal of a Technical School right down the road from Dignity. She chose to work for Dignity because she wanted to be a part of the transformation of the community. Even back then, she knew we would aim for holistic community development.
Shirley has a son who is married with two kids and a daughter. Her son works with the centrifuge at Dignity and can weld and work construction! Her daughter has a Hotel and Restaurant Management degree. Their family loves to swim and play badminton together in their free-time.
Here's a story from Shirley of her childhood:
Every time I look at the coconut tree, it reminds me during my childhood
days of my life and to the life of my brothers and sisters.
Since I am the eldest among the 9 children of our parents, I was always
in charge of taking care of my younger brothers and sisters, especially in serving
them food. We didn't have table spoons before, we only washed our hands
before eating. Every time we ate rice soup and others, my sister was always
running to the coconut tree near In our house to pick at least 2-3
leaves of coconut. She would cut it into pieces and distribute them as spoons to my younger siblings.
Whenever we did not have vegetables and fish to put in the rice for our meal, we just
squeezed coconut milk in our rice and that was our meal. Because of that we were sad. But now, I realized that even though we didn't drink milk before, we still had coconut milk for the rice and and coconut milk to cook our vegetables. My brothers and sisters always remember this. During our childhood we also used coconut leaves to make our ball, headband, watch and others. My parents did not buy toys for us because that was not their priority. But God made a way for us to not be malnourished during that time. In fact, we had a lot of fun with coconut leaves!