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National Capital Region
TIME IS GOLD: EDSP SCHOLAR BECOMES A LICENSED MECHANICAL ENGINEER

Engineer Carlos Miguel Cacatian, scholar of Batch 9 of the Education for Development Scholarship Program (EDSP), recently passed the 2017 Mechanical Engineering Board Examinations visited the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration Regional Welfare Office – National Capital Region (OWWA RWO-NCR).

 

After more than 5 years, Engr. Carlos Miguel Cacatian has finally achieved his dream of becoming a Licensed Mechinal Engineer. He graduated from Mapua Institute of Technology on 20 February 2017 and immediately passed the Mechanical Board Examinations on 22 March 2017. Engr. Cacatian took his oath as a Licensed Mechanical Engineer at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) on 1 May 2017.

 

Like most of the students, Engineer Cacatian also had his fair share of ups and downs during his college life. “I failed twice under the same professor. What hurts most is that I was already in my 4th year in college when I first failed,” he said. But instead of giving up, he was motivated to study harder to complete his education.

 

College life

 

Engr. Cacatian is the son of an OFW who works at the Off Shore Gas Company in New Orleans, United States of America. When asked on why he took up Mechanical Engineering, he said that his father greatly influenced him and he believes engineering is in demand with higher opportunity for employment. In his college days, he was active in extracurricular activities and was once a Treasurer of his school organization. In his first year, he joined a Goldberg making competition along with his batch mates. Engr. Cacatian passed his first 3 years in college with flying colors as he was part of the top 10 in his batch in the Engineering course. However, when he reached 4th year college, he failed two subjects under the same professor. When asked why he failed those subjects, Engr. Cacatian explained, “I failed my first subject because of the style of teaching of my strict professor. I also had a hard time because of the schedule of that subject; that subject is scheduled every Saturday morning but I had also classes every Friday night. As for the second subject, the passing grade for the final exam was 80 but I only got a grade of 79 that is why I failed the subject.”

 

Lessons Learned

 

Engr. Cacatian leaned on his family’s support when he failed his subjects. According to him, his family was a bit disappointed since he only had a year and a half to finish college without any failing mark but they were still there to encourage him to do better, “My family told me to study harder and improve my grades. They told me that I should pass that subject in the next term.” He learned a valuable lesson during the tough times that he encountered: Time Management. He stressed the importance of using one’s time wisely, “Time management is very important because it helps you to be productive. It is hard to waste one’s time.”  He also pointed out the importance of putting a lot of effort into studying by saying, “When I retook those failed subjects, I made sure to put all my effort into it to make sure that I will not fail again. I was afraid to fail again because I value my scholarship.”

 

EDSP Scholarship

 

Engr. Cacatian applied for the scholarship because he did not want to burden his family and he wanted to help his parents in paying his tuition. He feels thankful for the opportunity given to him and for helping him to become a better student, “I would like to thank OWWA for giving me the opportunity to become a scholar, it helped us a lot financially. I also feel grateful because I improved my study habits and became more responsible by managing my time wisely because I had to maintain my scholarship status.” He also gave an advice to the remaining scholars by saying, “Just focus and prioritize your studies. Also, you should not waste your time because you cannot bring it back anymore.”

Engineer Carlos Miguel Cacatian together with Education and Training Unit Head Vivian Velez

 

Engineer Carlos Miguel Cacatian together with his family.

 

Engineer Carlos Miguel Cacatian during his oath taking on 1 May 2017.

 
Carlos Miguel Cacatian during his graduation at Mapua Institute of Technology on 20 February 2017
 

National Capital Region
SOARING TO HIGHER SKIES: EDSP SCHOLAR GRADUATES AS MAGNA CUM LAUDE

Gene Luche Battung, scholar of Batch 11 of the Education for Development Scholarship Program (EDSP), recently graduated Magna Cum Laude from Air Link Aviation International College on 11 April 2017 visited the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration Regional Welfare Office – National Capital Region (OWWA RWO-NCR).

 

Life in the Middle East

 

Gene left the Philippines when he was in Grade 5 to live in Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) because his father will work as a Service Manager in Saudi Oger. His mother also stayed in KSA to take care of them. After graduating from Palm Crest International High School, Gene returned to the Philippines to pursue his college education. He felt lonely and incomplete because his parents were left behind in Riyadh. He said that, “Even my brother was with me in the Philippines, I felt at a loss because anything I need, my parents will always be there to provide. At the same time, I had to cope with the new life style and I got culture shock at first.”  He added that distance from his family for the first time did not hinder him from studying hard and graduating with Latin Honor. Being on his own during his college years was his source of motivation to make his parents proud.

 

College Life

 

When asked why he took the course in Aircraft Maintenance, Gene immediately answered that it was his dream since he was a child. He recalled that, “since I was a kid, every time I will be asked what I wanted to be when I grow up? My response will be “I want to become a Pilot”. I chose my course since it is related to the course that I originally wanted to take, which is flying.” Gene felt his college days were short-lived but he enjoyed it so much because he only completed his course in 3 years. He said that graduating from college at aged 18 is quite worrisome and if he is ready for the real world. The present struggle he is facing now is the fast paced world outside school.  After 3 years, Gene has succeeded in achieving a fraction of his dream to become a pilot with honor – Magna Cum Laude with a degree in Bachelor of Science in Aircraft Maintenance Technology.

 

Struggles and Blessings

 

Even if he wanted to take a Flying course, Gene had to adjust due to financial constraints. “If given the opportunity I would take up a Flying course but due to financial constraints, I had to take up a different course. Definitely, I still do have a plan of studying again to become a Pilot.”

 

It was back in May 2016 when his parents returned to the Philippines because of the mandatory repatriation of the Philippine government. His father worked at Saudi Oger, one of the nine construction and maintenance companies which faced a financial crisis in Saudi Arabia. According to Gene’s father, Engineer Marcial Battung, he spent his own money to buy their plane tickets because they could no longer wait for the repatriation program of the government. Fortunately, Engr. Battung was recently hired as the Section Chief of the Fire Safety and Enforcement Education department of the Bureau of Fire Protection.

 

Future plans

 

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Gene gave himself a timeline as well as viable options to help him achieve his dream of becoming a Pilot. “After I finish my 6-month internship at the Omni Aviation Corporation, I will complete all my requirements and take the licensure examination. From then, I have 2 viable options: first, is to continue working to be able to finance my studies and second, is to find a scholarship at any flying school,” he said.

 

EDSP Scholarship

 

Prior to the qualifying examination, Gene was not aware of the existence of the scholarship program of OWWA. He only found out about the EDSP when his school chose him, along with other students, to take the qualifying exams. “I felt blessed when I received that opportunity. I felt more blessed when the results came out that I was one out of the 3 passers from our school,” he said.

 

He is also thankful for the support that he received from OWWA for the past 3 years. “For everyone in OWWA, thank you so much for the help. Please continue your generous work. You have been instrumental to improve our lives - to me and also to other students and OFWs out there. Please continue doing your great job and God Bless you all,” he said.         

 

Gene inspires other scholars by quoting a popular author - “They should continue aspiring for their dreams and when they encounter times of hardships, they should always remember to seek the seed of triumph in every adversity. They should not lose hope when times get hard and remember that they are doing this not only for themselves but also for their parents who worked hard and suffered many sacrifices while working overseas.” 

RWO-NCR Director Emma V. Sinclair and EDSP Scholar Gene Luche Battung holding Gene’s medal for graduating as Magna Cum Laude

 

From L to R: PSD Chief Ma. Teresa Capa, RWO-NCR Director Emma V. Sinclair, EDSP Scholar Gene Luche Battung, Dolores Battung, Gene’s mother, and Engineer Marcial Battung, Gene’s father

 

From L to R: RWO-NCR Director Emma V. Sinclair, ETU head Vivian Velez, EDSP scholar Gene Luche Battung, Dolores Battung, PSD Chief Ma. Teresa Capa and Engineer Marcial Battung.

 

Gene Luche Battung together with his parents and brother during his graduation day

 

 Gene Luche Battung, EDSP Batch 11 scholar, from Air Link Aviation International College graduated Magna Cum Laude on 11 April 2017

 

RWO VI
OWWA conducts Summer Youth Camp for Scholars

Attended by twenty-three (23) scholars from the Education for Development Scholarship Program, the OFW Dependent Scholarship Program, and the Education and Livelihood Assistance Program, the activity carried   the theme "I Am An OWWA Scholar. I Choose to be Healthy. I Choose to be Excel. I Choose to be Me: Guiding the Scholars in making right Choices.”

 

The summer youth camp provided participants an avenue to discuss issues affecting the youth of today like peer pressure, teenage sexuality, academic pressure, and their role in nation-building. 

Overseas Workers Welfare Officer II, and Mr. Remon Albeza, Family Welfare Officer, pose with the OWWA scholars during the distribution of certificates

 

RWO I
OWWA Region 1 personnel learn on basic earthquake preparedness

The officers and staff of the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration Regional Welfare Office I (OWWA RWOI) set on a basic lecture and orientation on earthquake preparedness on May 8, 2017 as part of its activities on emergency planning. 

 

Mr. Freddie C. Evangelista and Ms. Schezelle Kriska Janica O. Doctolero of the Office of Civil Defense Regional Office I (OCD R1) served as learning service providers for the basic orientation.

 

They discussed on the procedures in conducting an earthquake drill, along with other vital information in preparing for any unforeseen natural disasters.

 

The lecture revealed the Phivolcs report that of the top 10 provinces which are at risk to earthquakes, La Union and Pangasinan rank second and fourth, respectively.

 

The OCD officers also identified the earthquake exit in the OWWA RWOI office. They also commited to extend assistance in creating disaster management council of the OWWA RWOI.

           The officers and staff of the OWWA RWOI sat on a basic lecture and orientation on earthquake preparedness on May 8, 2017. 

 

RWO ARMM
OWWA-ARMM conducts monitoring activity to strengthen livelihood program

COTABATO CITY – Consistent in the bid to support and strengthen livelihood programs to its client-OFWs, the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration - Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (OWWA-ARMM) conducted a monitoring activity to the Balik-Pinas, Balik-Hanapbuhay (BPBH) livelihood recipients last April 24-28, 2017.

 

Family Welfare Officer (FWO) Moctar S. Ulama lead the team. They interviewed the recipients to identify the needs of the OFWs and ensure that the agency continuously delivers quality programs and services for them.

 

“Through this monitoring activity, we determine whether the inputs in the projects were well utilized and to identify problems facing the community or project and finding solutions”, Ulama said.

 

OWWA-ARMM Regional Director Amy B. Crisostomo said the monitoring provides a means for the agency seeking to learn from their experiences and to incorporate them into policy and practice.

 

Nagpapasalamat po ako sa OWWA dahil hindi talaga nila kami pinapapabayaan. Nagpapasalamat din po ako dahil patuloy pa rin ang mga programang katulad nito na napakalaking tulong sa aming mga OFW”, one of the beneficiaries said.

 

Thus, OWWA-ARMM continues to seek prospective partners to provide the agency’s livelihood programs a wider range of opportunity that could best meet the needs and interests of their clients. 

 

 

RWO X
OWWA RWO-10 holds Scholars Summer Camp cum Conference and Learning Session

Last May 3-5, 2017, twenty-nine (29) scholars attended the Summer Camp cum Conference and Learning Session held at the Demiren Hotel, Tiano St., Cagayan de Oro City. The two and half day live-in activity has the following objectives as follows: Discuss sexuality as an important component of one’s personality; determine the factors that affects one’s attitudes and practices related to sexuality and assess personal  attitudes that may influence sexual behavior; define what is gender and its concepts; appreciate the importance of dating and courtship in choosing ideal partner in life; identify programs and services and intervention of Government towards the protection of children of OFWs left behind; and gain knowledge on the salient features of RA9262. Topics on human sexuality, gender, courtship, marriage and family life were discussed by Mr. Eugene B. Mesias, OWWO III and Ms. Eunecie D. Rugay, Family Welfare Officer respectively. The scholars were also get acquainted on the Programs and Interventions provided for the children of OFWs by Ms. Marylou L. Aniñon of the Department of Social Welfare and Development Regional Field Office No. 10 while Assistant Prosecutor Joseph Edwardsam  A. Eullaran of the Cagayan de Oro City Prosecutor’s Office discussed the legal aspect in pursuing cases against violators. Similarly, he also tackles on Etiquettes in Social Media, Cybercrime – Penalty and Prevention.

 

Aside from the learning sessions, a sports-feast held at Don Gregorio Pelaez Sports Center and showcase of talents among the scholars highlighted the event. 

 

 

 
 
 

RWO XII
2017 MIGRANT WORKERS’ DAY: ALL FOR BAGONG BAYANIs

Koronadal City - The Overseas Workers Welfare Administration – Regional Welfare Office XII celebrated the 2017 Migrant Workers Day with the theme "Magkasangga Para sa Kapakanan, Kabuhayan at Kalusugan ng mga OFWs." at KCC Convention Center, General Santos City last June 07, 2017.

 

The event was participated by Six Hundred (600) Overseas Filipino Workers and their families who are members of various OFW Family Circles (OFCs) in the region. The DOLE – Regional Coordinating Council (DOLE – RCC) comprised of attached agencies to the Department of Labor and Employment was also present in the event.  

 

The agency highlighted the exemplary contributions of the OFW Family Circles (OFCs) in the SOCCSKSARGEN region through its 2017 OFC Bagong Bayani Awards. This salutation serves as an inspiration to all OFW Family Circles (OFCs) to continue doing worthwhile activities for the betterment of the OFW community and our country.  

 

OIC Director Marlyn E. Jamero in her welcome message expressed her gratitude to the OFW community for their significant contribution to the socio-economic development of our country. She assured that the agency will continue to provide efficient programs and services to address the needs of modern heroes and their families.

 

The 2017 Outstanding OFC Member was Precilla A. Panzo of Capayuran OFW Family Association in Pigcawayan, North Cotabato. Her association has been an active partner of LGU-Pigcawayan in initiating various activities like Medical Missions and Feeding Programs. She was also one of the recipients of OWWA’s Parangal sa Natatanging Kababaihan during the Women’s Month Celebration last March 2017 at PICC.

 

Meanwhile, the TM OFW Marketing Multi-Purpose Cooperative was hailed as the OFC Bagong Bayani Awardee. This OFW association was formed by OWWA in 2004 and was acknowledged as the only OFW cooperative in the region in 2014.  They have been involved in various social and civic activities that empowered its members to be advocates for the improvement of the OFW community in Tulunan, North Cotabato. 

 

"Ang karangalang ito na nagmula sa OWWA ay hindi lamang para sa aming asosasyon. Ito po ay parangal at pagkilala sa bawat bagong bayani na naririto ngayon at saang sulok man ng mundo. Asahan niyo po, na mas pagbubutihan pa namin ang aming paglilingkod upang mas maipagmalaki pa natin ang pamilyang OFW. Mabuhay po ang Migranteng Pilipino. "., this was an excerpt from the message of Mr. Davie P. Celestial, President of TM OFW Marketing Multi-Purpose Cooperative..

 

Here is the complete list of winners of OFC Bagong Bayani Awards

GROUP CATEGORY

2017 OFC BAGONG BAYANI AWARD

TM OFW Farmers Cooperative

EXCELLENCE IN COMMUNITY AND SOCIAL SERVICE

Capayuran  OFW and Family Association

EXCELLENCE IN ENTREPRENEURSHIP

Old Poblacion Maitum OFW  Family Association

EXCELLENCE IN SPORTS, CULTURE AND ARTS

Tupi Overseas Families Association

            MOST PROMISING ORGANIZATION

Poblacion 3 OFW and Family Association

EXCELLENCE IN ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION

New Pangasinan OFW Family Association

INDIVIDUAL CATEGORY

OUTSTANDING OFC MEMBER

Precilla A. Panzo

           OFC YOUTH MODEL

Runolyn Subpangan

LEADERSHIP AWARD

Davie P. Celestial

EXCELLENCE IN COMMUNITY AND SOCIAL SERVICE

Ginalyn L. Montalban

OUTSTANDING NEW OFC MEMBER

Manuel O. Ramento, Jr.

The celebration is annual activity of OWWA in commemoration of signing into law of Republic Act 8042 or the Migrant Workers Act of 1995 that aims to recognize the incomparable efforts and sacrifices of Overseas Filipino Workers all over the world.

The  2017 Outstanding OFW Family Circle, TM OFW Farmer Marketing Multi-Purpose Cooperative together with the  2017 Outstanding OFC Member Precilla A. Panzo (center in blue) 

 

OFW Precilla A. Panzo (center) emotionally receives her Plaque of Recognition and Cash Prize from OIC Marlyn E. Jamero (leftmost) and DOLE XII Assistant Regional Director Yahya A. Centi.

 

Winners for Individual Category holding their Plaques: Manuel Ramento, Jr. – Outstanding New OFC Member and Ginalyn L. Montalban, Excellence for Community and Social Service Awardee.

 

Winners for Individual Category holding their Plaques: Davie P. Celestial – Leadership Awardee and Runolyn M. Subpangan, Outstanding OFC Youth Model Awarde.

 

Winners for Group Category (Clockwise from Upper Right) : Poblacion 3 OFW Family Association – Most Promising OFC; OFW New Pangasinan Isulan Sector -  Excellence for Environmental Protection Awardee; Old Poblacion Maitum OFW Family Association - Excellence for Entrepreneurship Awardee; and Tupi Overseas Families Association - Excellence for Sports, Culture and Arts Awardee.

 

Some of Public OFW Desk Officers(PODOs) who attended this year’s Migrant Workers’ Day.

 

OWWA XII Staff

 

RWO X
OWWA RWO-10 joins International AIDS Candlelight Memorial

OWWA Region-10 joins the International 34th AIDS Candlelight Memorial last May 14, 2017 at the Activity Center, Limketkai Center, Cagayan de Oro City. Hundreds of participants coming from different sectoral groups to include the academe, youth, health-advocate and some government agencies also attended the event. The program started with a Holy Mass afterwards the ceremonial lighting of candles in commemoration to those who died inflicted with AIDS as well as a show of support to those persons living with HIV, and concerned advocate groups who worked tirelessly for the education and awareness and provision of care and treatment.

 

One of the highlights of the program was the testimony of a person living with HIV. The testimony seeks to reduce the stigma as well as a sort of information-dissemination and awareness to the gravity of the problem. It also aims to encourage persons who have risky behaviors to have tested with HIV and avail of the treatment offered by the government health institutions and non-government organizations.

 

Since its inception in 2010, OWWA-10 has been part of this worthwhile endeavor. OWWA is one of the member age ncies of the Misamis Oriental – Cagayan de Oro AIDS Network, (MOCAN) a coalition of government and non-government organizations working for various HIV-AIDS related causes in Cagayan de Oro City and Northern Mindanao.

 
 

 

RWO IX
OWWA RWO-IX AWARDS LIVELIHOOD STARTER KITS TO 21 OFWs

Zamboanga City – Twenty one (21) OFWs received their livelihood starter kits under the Balik Pinas Balik Hanapbuhay program of Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) on May 24 & 26, 2017, this City. The awarding of starter kits was facilitated by Mark Teody Bidad, AO-V/Accountant and assisted by Shedra S. Ayaz and Khalil Isser S. Lorena, both Family Welfare Officers and Fatima Jane Salihuddin, Labor Communication Officer of OWWWA RWO-IX, Zamboanga City.

 

Balik Pinas Balik Hanapbuhay! Program is a package of livelihood assistance/support intended to provide immediate relief to returning OWWA members, active or non-active who were: (1) displaced by hostilities or wars/political conflicts, policy reforms or changes by host governments; (2) victims of illegal recruitment or human trafficking or other distressful situations; (3) distressed wards at the Migrant Workers and Overseas Filipinos Resource Centers who are due for repatriation; and (4) repatriated OWWA-members who were employed by foreign employers which are beset with financial difficulties due to economic conditions.

 

The livelihood kits starter kits vary from sewing machine, burger stand, and baking & carinderia kits depending on the choice of the recipient. The recipients must submit Business Plan for their desired business and attend the Financial Literacy Training. The training aims to: (1) Equip the participants with management skills in business and (2) Encourage participants to engage in self-employment in lieu of overseas work.

 

Recipients are especially grateful to OWWA RWO-IX for the assistance. “This kit will really help me change my life”, said Jijang Aradi, a recipient of the Balik-Pinas Balik-Hanap Buhay Program.

Recipient of Sewing Machine Kit 
 
Recipient of Baking & Carinderia Kit 
 
Recipient of Burger Stand Kit
 
OWWA RWO IX Staff during the Financial Literacy Training (L-R) (Back) CJ QUIAMCO, FATIMA HAWARI, and FATIMA NASARI (all GIPs), NAJIB SALAPUDDIN, IT Instructor (Front) SHEDRA S. AYAZ and BADRIA ABDULA (Both Family Welfare Officer), FATIMA JANE SALIHUDDIN, Labor Communication Officer

 

RWO I
OWWA opens college scholarship for 2nd to 5th year OFW dependents

The Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) now accepts application for the scholarship program for overseas Filipino workers’ dependents who are currently enrolled in college.

 

The Education for Development Scholarship Program (EDSP) has been expanded to include admission of OFW legal dependents are now in their second to fifth year in college.

 

The scholarship program provides P60,000 financial assistance to qualified OFW legal dependents, who should be a child of a married OFW-member; or sibling of a single or childless OFW-member. The OFW should also be an active OWWA member. If membership is expired, it should be within the six-month extension period.

 

The applicant should have a general weighted average not lower than B letter grade or 85 per cent equivalence in all subjects in the last school year attended in full load.

 

Only six scholarship slots per province are available. Hence, interested qualified applicants are advised to submit their application the soonest, as acceptance and admission is on a ‘first-come, first-served basis.’

 

Basic documentary requirements include accomplished application form; 2x2 identification picture; birth certificate authenticated by the Philippine Statistics Authority; duly-authenticated certificate of grades in the last school year; and proof of OWWA membership of the OFW-member.

 

For inquiries, the OWWA Regional Welfare Office I may be reached at 0908 863 4300 / 0908 863 4250 / 09727 620 7300, or email at owwalaunion@yahoo.com

 

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