VENEZUELAN Inéscar Andreina García Bastardo, 30, came to TT two years ago with her little daughter looking for stability. But life in Tobago was not as smooth as she would have liked.
However, her passion for pastry and baking opened possibilities as she got Tobago to "sweeten up" to her through her special cakes.
Born in the city of Maturin, Monagas State, Inescar, an administrative assistant, arrived in TT with her daughter on June 28, 2018. She said it was a difficult decision to leave home but she was calm as one of her sisters is married to a TT citizens and lives with her family in Tobago.
“We are five brothers (four females and one male). We are all here while my parents are in Venezuela waiting for us,” she said.
Inescar and her three-year-old daughter live with her sister and brother-in-law.
"For me, like any Venezuelan who comes to another country, the beginning has not been easy. I spent several months (struggling)...and that forced me to take individual measures to survive here," she said.
In October 2018, Inescar decided to start here own business making sweets, one of her passions.
“In Venezuela I took a pastry course before deciding to come. When I got here, the first four months I only made cakes and sweets for my brothers and some of their friends, that's how the idea of starting the business in a big way came about.”
A month after starting her business she managed to get a job as a helper in a restaurant kitchen.
"I have worked as a kitchen assistant, I have also done cleaning work in the houses of some Trinitarian friends of my brothers and I am currently working House of Pancakes, in the kitchen part, I do American-type breakfast."
She said her job at House of Pancakes has not hindered her side business.
“I make sweets to help me financially, because I am a single mother. I make cakes.. and combine it with complete orders for parties.”
She specialises in coconut cakes; Quesillos (Venezuelan flan), with or without alcohol; chocolate cakes; arequipe (Dulce de leche); marquesas (almond and sugar sweets); pineapple cake; sponge cake; vanilla sponge cake and cheesecake.
"Thank God people have begun to know my work and now I have both Venezuelan and Trinidadian clients, also many tourists make orders thanks to the fact that my sisters work in restaurants, and hotels offer sweets." she said.
Inescar, who lives Gaskin Bay Road, Bon Accord, said, "When I don't have orders I go out to walk through several streets, people know me and greet me.
“I thank God for allowing me to be in this beautiful country, full of opportunities and above all, good people. Venezuelans leave our country with fear for not knowing what we may find outside and when we arrive here we meet people of a high human quality who are always ready to help us.”
Inescar said she and her daughter continue to try to learn English and adapt to the TT culture.