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Conference at AIM Highlights Results of 3-Year Study on OFWs by OWWA and AIM

 

In 2014-2017 a research team from OWWA and AIM followed 2,000 first-time Filipino domestic workers who went to work in Hong Kong and Saudi Arabia, and their family left behind. All OFWs have to take the PDOS or Pre-Departure Orientation Seminar. The objective of the study was to test the impact of new modules for the PDOS as well as to gain insights on how domestic workers and their families adjust to having a family member become an OFW.

 

The PDOS program has been running since 1983 by POEA and OWWA, and this marks the first time that OWWA partnered with an academic institution to do a long-term evidence-based impact evaluation of the program. For AIM, on the other hand, the research is in line with AIM’s focus on business and society, and this study was an opportunity to bring theories and rigorous statistical techniques to a sector that is very important for the country, namely OFWs.

 

Together, an OWWA-AIM research team experimented with 4 new twists on the basic PDOS modules. The first was a new financial literacy module using a comic-book format to teach 4 basic simple messages that are critical to savings. The second experiment was to send savings reminders every 15 days to the OFWs, and the third was using the experience directly from ex-abroads in setting expectations of first-time DWs. The fourth experiment was a gift of dried mangoes that DWs were instructed to give to their employer to make a good first impression upon arrival in HK or KSA. The latter draws on the theories of behavioral economics that are increasingly being used to elicit desired behavior without heavy direction.

 

2,000 domestic workers were randomly assigned to a comparison group and a project group. The DWs and their families were interviewed just prior to the departure of the DW, and again after 8 months on the job and finally at the end of the work contract. The project has gathered a large amount of data on domestic workers including communcations, remittances, savings and expenditure decisions, and attitudes. The findings and their implications for policy will be presented at a conference in AIM on Oct 24, 2017 which will be attended by government representatives, migrant groups, NGOs and academe.

 

The study was financed by a grant to AIM from 3ie, The International Initiative for Impact Evaluation. 3ie is an international grant-making NGO promoting evidence-based development policies and program. The main funders of 3ie are the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, UKaid, and the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation.

RWO VII

The Overseas Workers Welfare Administration XII joined the City of Koronadal as it officially opened its 17th Charter Anniversary and 7th Negosyo Festival with the theme "Linking People Towards Global AgriculTourism Business" last October 5, 2017. 

            Various activities were prepared by the City Government of Koronadal for its 4-day celebration this year. Among them are the Kasalan ng Bayan Ceremonies, simultaneous Trade Fair Exhibits, Anniversary Lunch at the Park, Awarding of Livelihood Grants to various sectors and Binayle sa Parke 2017.

For the whole month of October consumers may avail of big discounts from malls, department stores, and other commercial establishments in the city.

Koronadal City is the regional seat of the SOCCSKSARGEN region and one of the small bustling cities in Mindanao that moves to the progress of all people in South Cotabato.

 

RWO VIII

The Overseas Workers Welfare Administration Regional Welfare Office VIII joined the lecture on Financial Literacy and Maritime Labour Convention, 2006 last September 28, 2017 at the National Maritime Polytechnic (NMP) School Building No. 3, Tacloban City.

The lecture was participated by eighty-one (81) seafarers currently enrolled in Maritime Labour Convention (MLC). Engr. Ponciano V. Trinidad, OIC, Maritime Training and Assessment Division open the event and welcomed the participants to the one-day lecture seminar.

Among the resource persons for the activity who were introduced by Ms. Peñafiel Flor M. Legua, Head of NMP HRM Section, were Ms. Heidi A. Hosillios, Overseas Workers Welfare II, who gave lecture on financial literacy and Atty. John Rio A. Bautista, OIC, Director II, Legal Research, Docket and Enforcement Branch, POEA, who gave lecture on the Maritime Labour Convention (MLC) 2006.

Ms. Hosillos started her lecture defining financial literacy and citing its importance especially to the OFWs. She also shared a glimpse of the positive effects of working overseas as well as its challenges and obstacles. She pointed out the benefits of having a sound financial plan.

After the intensive lecture workshop, Ms. Hosillos, then gave tips on how to achieve financial freedom, which is to plan, save and invest their money. Clearly defining every family member’s needs and wants will also help in achieving financial freedom.

After the financial literacy the participants were likewise given a lecture by Atty. John Rio A. Bautista, OIC-Director II of Legal Research, Docket and Enforcement Branch.

The activity concluded with the awarding of certificates of appreciation to the resource speakers.

OWWA RWO 8 continues to carry on with its mission of promoting the welfare of OFWs and their families thru the conduct of different lectures and seminars to enhance their capacities and technical know-hows

(Participants attentively listening to the lecture on financial planning)

(Ms. Hosillos sharing her knowledge on financial literacy to the MLC 2006 availees of NMP)

 

 

RWO VIII

 

With the endeavour to give proper recognition to the outstanding achievements of the OFWs and their families and to highlight the role of the OFW family acting as a group in the attainment of socio-civic, educational, professional and material success, OWWA once again held its search for Model OFW Family of the Year Awards. 

Three families were nominated for the land-based category namely Engr. Salvador S. Villalino Sr., and Family from Catbalogan City, Mr. William B. Aner and Family from Catbalogan City and Engr. Felipe D. Edradan Jr. and Family from Burauen, Leyte. For the sea-based category, nominees were Engr. Pedro A. Atibagos and Family from Burauen, Leyte, Capt. Rodello M. Ponay and Family from Catbalogan City and Mr. Enrico D. Songahid and Family from Burauen, Leyte.

This year marks the 12th Model OFW Family of the Year Awards. The screening and selection process was held at Ocho Seafood and Grill last September 15, 2017 in which winners were deliberated scrupulously by the critical minds and expertise of the following board of judges: Executive Director of National Maritime Polytechnic Regional Office VIII, Director Romulo V. Bernardes, Regional Director 

(The stage is set for this year’s Model OFW Family of the Award)

Three families were nominated for the land-based category namely Engr. Salvador S. Villalino Sr., and Family from Catbalogan City, Mr. William B. Aner and Family from Catbalogan City and Engr. Felipe D. Edradan Jr. and Family from Burauen, Leyte. For the sea-based category, nominees were Engr. Pedro A. Atibagos and Family from Burauen, Leyte, Capt. Rodello M. Ponay and Family from Catbalogan City and Mr. Enrico D. Songahid and Family from Burauen, Leyte.

(Members of the Board of Judges from left Rev. Fr. Kim Margallo, Deputy Directo-NMP, Mayla Macadawan, Executive Director-NMP, Romulo V. Bernardes, TESDA Regional Directo, Toni June A. Tamayo and DOLE RO8 Regional Director Joel M. Gonzales)

(Atty. Kerwin Leonida delivering his message)

RWO I

The Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) encourages its member-overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) or their qualified dependents in Ilocos Region to take advantage of its scholarship program on technical-vocational skills development.

The OWWA Skills For Employment Scholarship Program (SESP) aims to provide training assistance to OFWs or their qualified dependents who desire to enroll in any tech-voc courses in any training institute accredited by the TESDA.

The SESP provides P14,500 educational assistance to scholars as they complete their TESDA-accredited tech-voc courses leading to their acquisition of a National Certificate (NC) II or NC III related to their skill.

Qualified to apply are OFWs who are active OWWA members, or their qualified dependents namely spouse or child below 24 years of age for married OFWs; or sibling below 24 years of age for single OFWs. The scholarship applicant must have at least finished high school.

In Region 1, among the most common tech-voc courses being applied for the SESP include Welding, Caregiving, Cookery, Visual Graphic Design, Bartending, among many others.

Interested qualified applicants in Region 1 may get in touch with the OWWA Regional Welfare Office 1 thru hotline number 0908 863 4250, email at owwalaunion@yahoo.com, or thru its official Facebook page, facebook.com/owwarwo1.
 
 
 

OFWs who are active members of OWWA, or their qualified dependents, are encouraged to apply for the scholarship program of OWWA on technical-vocational training. Called the SESP, the program gives P14,500 assistance to qualified scholars.

 
 
RWO CARAGA

The Overseas Workers Welfare Administration kicked off its 4th PESO Conference in the Province of Dinagat Islands in time with the province’s Agri-Fishery, Tourism and Industrial Trade Fair 2017. Twenty one (21) PESO managers and their understudy attended the conference at the Don Ruben Training Hall, San Jose, Dinagat Island on October 1, 2017.

            PESO Conference is an annual event spearheaded by the agency in partnership with provincial local government units to capacitate their Public Employment Service Office (PESO) Managers for the eventual boost in the implementation of OWWA Programs and Services and duly impart these to their respective constituents.

            In his message, Regional Director Samuel S. Madrid acknowledged the role of PESO managers as the primary implementing arm of OWWA and POEA in each municipality and city. “What we have in mind is to empower, upgrade and update PESO Officers with the changing and evolving programs and services of OWWA and POEA”, the director said.

            OWWA implements quality, responsive and timely intervention to its member-OFWs. As such, new and amended programs of the agency are trickled down to the PESO Officers for easy and convenient delivery to the clients especially in remote areas.

Meanwhile, POEA regional coordinator for Caraga Ritchel Molero-Butao, discussed the Status of the Direct Hiring Mode of Recruitment as per Sec. 123. Ban on Direct Hires- “No employer shall directly hire an Overseas Filipino Worker for overseas employment.” She also tackled clarification on recruitment outside registered office by securing a Special Recruitment Authority prior to the conduct of the recruitment.

Furthermore, as a major objective of the conference, an update on the releases made by the office on its different programs including the Balik Pinas Balik Hanapbuhay Program and the Welfare Assistance Program- Earthquake was made.

OWWO II Jean Mary G. Ronquillo discussed the revamped Balik Pinas Balik Hanapbuhay Program providing 20,000.00 cash to distressed OFWs who have not finished their contracts overseas. She also introduced the MEDplus program providing supplemental medical relief for active OWWA OFW-members afflicted with dreaded diseases and were hospitalized, either at the jobsite or while in the Philippines.

On the other hand, the Welfare Assistance Program (WAP) was discussed by OIC of PSD, Ma. Ireen C. Cambaling. WAP is an assistance for Calamity, Bereavement, Medical and Relief extended to OWWA members, active or non-active, and/or their families, who are not eligible under any of the existing OWWA social benefit programs and services.

The capability building exercise for the PESO Managers is only part of the simultaneous training activities done by the agency in the province.

The series will be continued in the Province of Surigao del Sur on October 20, followed by Agusan del Norte on October 25, then Agusan del Sur on the 27th, Siargao Island is slated in November 8 while Surigao del Norte will be on November 10. (JPIMillones/ OWWA Caraga)

 

Director Samuel Madrid Addressing PESO Officers’ Concerns

POEA Regional Coordinator Ritchel M. Butao discussing POEA Updates

POEA Regional Coordinator Ritchel M. Butao discussing POEA Updates

PESO managers all smiles during the community dance

PESO managers pose with OWWA Staff

RWO VI

The Overseas Workers Welfare Administration Regional Welfare Office (OWWA RWO) VI, in reiterating its role as a reliable partner of the Regional Coordinating Council (RCC), published its accomplishments for the month of September in a press briefing organized by the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) Region VI for the recently implemented Department Orders 182 and 178.

 

The activity, attended by several media personnel from the local trimedia outfits, took place at Tatoy’s Manokan in Villa Iloilo City last September 29, 2017 and also involved several partner agencies like the Philippine Overseas Employment Agency, the National Conciliation and Mediation Board, the Regional Tripartite Wages and Productivity Board, the Professional Regulation Commission, the Technical Skills Development Authority, and the Employees’ Compensation Commission

 

OWWA-RWO VI Regional Director (RD) Wilfreda Misterio was on-hand at the panel to brief the attendees and answer their questions in the said event’s open forum.

 

Among some of the accomplishments RD Misterio touted were the awarding of the Region 6 Model OFW Family of the Year Awards (MOFYA) winners—the Morales family for the Landbased Category and the Bedia family for the Seabased Category—who are slated to represent the region at the national awarding ceremony in November; its ongoing involvement with the Atikha Overseas Workers and Communities Initiative, Inc.’s Family Income Management Training seminar series; its partnership with the Department of Trade and Industry for the Business Plan preparation workshop; and the Seafarers’ Day 2017, which was also being held around the same time of the meeting.

 

The said event also served as DOLE’s capacity-building activity for its partner organizations.

 

(Top photo) RD Misterio answers a question from a reporter; (Bottom photo) The rest of the RCC panel 

RWO VI

To honor the contributions of its sea-based Overseas Filipino Worker (OFW) members, the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration Regional Welfare Office (OWWA RWO) VI recently conducted its annual Seafarers’ Day activity with a free orientation seminar.

About forty-six (46) attendees composed of vacationing seafarers, members of the Seafarers’ Wives of Association of Visayas Inc. (SWAVI) – Iloilo Chapter, and representatives from several manning agencies attended the half-day forum at OWWA’s Iloilo City office last September 29, 2017.

 

Ms. Wilfreda L. Misterio, OWWA Region 6 Director, asks the members of SWAVI to stand up and be recognized .

 

Aside from OWWA, other government agencies that participated in the said activity were the Department of Labor and Employment, the Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA), PhilHealth, the Social Security System (SSS), and the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA). The said agencies shared their programs and updates with regards to their OFW clients.

Ms. Wilfreda L. Misterio, the Region 6 Director of OWWA, emphasized why regular activities held for seafarers and OFWs, in general, are important.

“Connection to the family is the one thing that is sacrificed when a seafarer goes abroad to work,” Director Misterio said. “The very least could do as an agency is to reach out to our clients and show them that we value their contributions.”

The event was held in observance of the World Maritime Day, a day created by the United Nations (UN) via the International Maritime Organization (IMO) to “highlight the significant contribution of the IMO and its Member States to global efforts to improve the safety, security and efficiency of shipping and to protect the marine environment.”  

 

OWWA Region 6 staff Ms. Rizza Joy M. Moldes, Overseas Workers Welfare Officer II (seated, extreme left), and Ms. Jean B. Jover, Family Welfare Officer (standing, extreme left), poses with the participants at the end of the seminar.

 

This year’s theme was “Connecting Ships, Ports, and People.”

RWO CARAGA

In response to the request of the OFWs and beneficiaries for capability enhancement through livelihood skills training, OWWA under its reintegration program, in partnership with the Provincial Government of Dinagat Island and other national line agencies, carried out a simultaneous Party Balloon Design, Floral Arrangement and Ice Cream Making to Dinagat, San Jose and  Cagdianao OFWs and Dependents.

Fifty six participants from the three municipalities of Dinagat Island attended the first day of the training which tackled Balloon and Floral Arrangement on September 29, 2017 while thirty participants joined Ice Cream Making on the second day, on September 30, 2017 both at Don Ruben Training Hall, San Jose, Province of Dinagat Islands.

Participants were introduced to the different equipment necessary for the conduct of each activity. While the trainer executed each design for the balloon design and floral arrangement, the participants also followed along making their learning more in depth. Among their outputs were pillar, ones used in the entrance of events; center piece and figures like butterfly, spider and flower. The OFWs and their dependents were delighted that they were allowed to bring home their outputs.

On the next day, a local of Dinagat introduced ice cream making. Participants were given time to try the actual mixing of the ingredients and the whole process. They were able to produce three tubes of ice cream for the whole day which they all shared together.

Ms. Emma Y. Mausisa, PESO Manager Province of Dinagat Islands, expressed her gratitude to the agency for providing the training. “I am very thankful to OWWA for bringing the techno-demo training to the province. Hopefully, our constituents will be able to venture into business and livelihood and eventually, there will be no need for them to go abroad” Mausisa said.

Meanwhile, as part of their capability empowerment, DTI Negosyo Center Coordinator Saira Shade M. Gallogo, discussed consumer rights to the participants and introduced them the possible ways they should be well aware of in buying products and services.

In return, OWWA Regional Director Samuel S. Madrid challenged the participants to focus and learn from the activity. This is a way of the agency to help them eventually become productive on their own. “The activity is done in line w/ the DOLE’s thrust – trabaho, negosyo, kabuhayan”, the director bared. “We will also bring new technology relevant and appropriate to the natural resource of Dinagat, like Apiculture/ Bee farming”, he added

The activity is only part of the series of activities done by the agency in the province including PESO Conference, Information Technology Training, Enhanced Entrepreneurial Development Training, and Financial Literacy. (JPIMillones/ OWWA Caraga)

 

 

Regional Director Samuel S. Madrid delivering his message to the participants

Display of the Participants Balloon and Floral Arrangement

DTI Negosyo Center Coordinator Saira Shade M. Gallogo discussing Consumer Rights

The participants with OWWA Staff and PESO Personnel

National Capital Region
Scholars and OFC-Members Attend Financial Literacy Training

17 scholars and 26 members of the OFW Family Circle (OFC) in the National Capital Region (NCR) attended the Financial Literacy Training at the OWWA Multipurpose Hall on 19 August 2017.

 

This training will encourage you to save and invest for your future needs. We hope that you would learn how to manage your finances and invest wisely.” Reintegration Unit Head Zandro Almendrala said in his opening remarks.

 

According to Resource Speaker Engr. Marvin James Revilla, a Registered Financial Consultant, the formula for success in life is the art of being, doing, and having – you must know, who you must be and what you must do so that you can attain your goals. He emphasized the 3 steps in financial planning which is to save, invest, and create a goal. According to Engr. Revilla, there are 3 pillars in financial planning – Earning, Managing, and Growing. “You have to earn money, manage it wisely in order for it to grow,” he said.

 

Engr. Revilla also shared some tips on how to save emergency funds. According to him, the savings should be equivalent to 3 months for an employed individual and 6 months for a business owner’s monthly expenses. He also encouraged the participants to invest in their health insurance as this would help them shoulder their medical expenses in case of emergencies.

Candy Mariel Juego, Batch 12 EDSP scholar, shared her thoughts on the training.
 

Candy Mariel Juego, an EDSP scholar, said that the training helped her to realize the importance of investing and saving money. “I learned that the investment for health and protection should come first in order for the speculative investment to not go to waste. Even at a young age we should learn how to spend money wisely and try to invest in the stock market,” she said.

 
From L to R: 44 RWO – NCR Scholars and OFC members attend the Financial Literacy Training and Engineer Marvin James Revilla conducting the Financial Literacy Training.

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