Inspiration

Wonder Kid: 13-Year-Old Manages Her Own Neighborhood Store in Legazpi Village

Czarina Agustines runs a cozy neighborhood store called Mariposa.
IMAGE COURTESY DEE DEE AGUSTINES
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Thirteen-year-old Czarina Agustines has a special relationship with her mother, Dee Dee. They are business partners. They run a cozy neighborhood store called Mariposa in Legazpi Village.

The store is Czarina's brainchild, tracing its humble beginnings to its time as a village flowershop. Over time, the business has evolved into a full-fledged boutique, with friends and neighbors wanting to put their own home business products in the store. Friends as far as Silang, Cavite have filled Mariposa’s shelves with local products such as coconut oil, fruit chips, and other snacks.



The Mariposa store in Legaspi Village

The family’s friends have also contributed books for book sharing, and a healer drops by on Mondays for weekly sessions. It sometimes doubles as a hangout spot for neighbors to come in and share a glass of wine after work. Undoubtedly, Mariposa brings the Legaspi community closer together.

Czarina continues to play a huge part in the store, as she still enjoys arranging flowers. Since all of her work is done at school, this gives her ample time to spend with her growing business with her mother and her “Nana” Mylene, who manages the store. The teenager has bigger plans for Mariposa, as it’s become her goal for it to eventually carry some of the clothes she desires to design in the future.


Czarina arranges flowers at the store


“I’ll try to keep my prefrontal cortex (that’s in your brain) open,” she replied after we asked her about how she sees herself in 10 years. “I’d like to be working in fashion design, act, and also travel.” Among her many goals, that latter entails owning properties at her favorite places, just like her uncle.

When she’s not at the store, Czarina reads a book or feeds her chickens. She also comes from a very tight-knight family and spends a bulk of her time with them, either on trips or sailing during the weekend. Counted among her favorite people are her brothers, whom she calls in adoration “the best brothers in the world.”


Czarina and her brothers

It’s easy to forget that Czarina is so young, especially when she muses, “I’m trying to focus my life on [the] now instead of wanting something else in the future and then missing out on the moment.” A true Wonder Kid, she advises her fellow peers, “If you have a dream, you have to do something about it to make it come true.” We can definitely take some sage advice from this business savvy teen.

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About The Author
Hannah Lazatin
Features Editor
Hannah is originally from Pampanga and from a big, close-knit family who likes to find a reason to get together at the dinner table. Experiences inspire her. “Once, at a restaurant, I received an interpretation of my second name ‘Celina,’ and it meant 'someone who tries everything once' and that is me through and through,” she says. As for the job, she wants her “readers to be inspired by the stories of the people we feature and to move them to reach for greater things.”
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