You are here

Home » News

Regional News

OWWA Region 1 recognizes social partners on 22nd Migrant Workers’ Day Celeb

The Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) has awarded its partners in the achievement of its mandate to promote and protect the welfare of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) and their families in Region 1, as part of the celebration of the 22nd Migrant Workers’ Day today, June 8, at the City of San Fernando, La Union.


In a recognition rites, the OWWA Regional Welfare Office I (RWOI) has awarded various social partners and OFW stakeholders, representing various sectors such as government agencies, non-government organizations, OFW Family Circles (OFCs), media partners and private organizations.


The government partner-awardees were: Provincial Governments of Pangasinan, La Union, Ilocos Sur and Ilocos Norte; City Government of Dagupan; Pangasinan Public Employment Services Office; Land Bank of the Philippines; line agency regional offices namely DOLE, POEA, NRCO, DFA, DA, DTI, TESDA, PIA, ECC, PhilHealth, PAGIBIG; and the TESDA Pangasinan Provincial office.


Outstanding OFCs were those from Cataban, Siwawer, San Nicolas, Bacarra, and Currimao of Ilocos Norte; Sta. Catalina, Caparia-an, San Ildefonso, San Vicente and the Ilocos Sur OFW Families Associations from Ilocos Sur; Luna, Bannuar-Sudipen, Bannuar-Naguilian, Aringay, and the Coalition of OFW Associations in La Union, from La Union; and Mangaldan, Alaminos, Rosales, Villasis, and Asingan from Pangasinan.


Media partner-awardees were DZRD Sonshine Radio, DZNL Aksyon Radio, DZSO Bombo Radyo La Union, DWIZ News Radio’s Rapido by Allan Sison; DZAG Radyo ng Bayan, and the Amianan Tribune.


Also recognized were local recruitments agencies namely RN Job Quest, Androme Recruitment, Concorde International, FAASI International, and Topmake International Manpower Services; and training institutes such as the Far East Maritime Foundation, Philgerma Manufacturing, HSE Techskills, Bauang Training Center, and Maxima Technical and Skills. The OWWA Region 1 Scholars Inc., Diocesan Ministry for Migrants and Itinerant People, and the Kabayan Help Desk in Naguilian, La Union were also among the awardees.


In his message, OWWA RWOI OIC Gerardo C. Rimorin said, “we are more than grateful of your passionate involvement to the endeavors of the OWWA. And while we remain inspired by your help, it is also our hope that we could develop more viable strategies to ensure the sustainability of the OFW lifeline in the community.”


Gracing the activity to give their messages were Dagupan City Mayor Belen T. Fernandez, Pangasinan PESO Manager Alex F. Ferrer, La Union PESO Manager Charito Dator representing Gov. Francisco Emmanuel “Pacoy” R. Ortega III, and DOLE La Union Chief Agnes Aguinaldo representing RD Nathaniel V. Lacambra.


The guest of honor was Ms. Rebecca Bustamante-Mills, an internationally-acclaimed inspirational speaker known for her “From Maid to Made” life story. A former domestic worker in Singapore and Canada, she struggled her way up to becoming the CEO in her own multinational company. “Find your purpose, and you have to work hard for it,” Bustamante-Mills said.


The Migrant Workers’ Day, also known as “Araw ng Pasasalamat,” is an annual celebration for the passing of the Migrant Workers Act of 1995, which institutes policies of overseas employment and establish a higher standard of protection and promotion of the welfare of migrant workers and their families.

The OWWA RWOI has recognized its partners in the achievement of its mandate to promote and protect the welfares of OFWs and their families, as part of the celebration of the 22nd Migrant Workers’ Day today, June 8, at the City of San Fernando, La Union.



Overseas Workers Welfare Administration- Regional Welfare Office VIII joined the Business Opportunity Seminar on Stabilized Brown Rice conducted by the Department of Trade and Industry- Southern Leyte and FNRI-DOST last May 9, 2017 at the SPPMPC Training Center, Hinunangan Southern Leyte.


Three OFCs from Southern Leyte were the participants of the said seminar namely: Hinunangan OFWs and Families Association, Hinundayan OFW Association and Cabalianon OFWs and Families Organization. Over fifty (50) members of the said organizations joined the seminar.


Ms. Rodah A. Cerna, Family Welfare Officer, represented OWWA during the event. Provincial Director of DTI-Southern Leyte, Mr. Michael B. Nuñez also graced the event and gave the opening remarks.


Engr. Rosemarie G. Garcia, the Supervising SRS, of Food and Nutrition Research Institute-DOST, gave a lecture on the Health Benefits and Business Opportunities for Brown Rice. She cited concrete reasons why investing in this kind of business is very timely and advantageous. The following reasons were given by Engr. Garcia: Increasing demand for nutritious and functional foods, Growing number of educated consumers, increasing cost of medicine and health care and lastly, scientific evidence on efficacy.


Participants were given the opportunities to avail of the FNRI technologies. They were advised to write formal letters and attend series of consultative meetings, Technology Needs Assessments and Demonstrations.


OWWA RWO 8 hopes to reach more OFWs in the region who can avail and participate in this kind of timely and relevant seminar with the help of its partner agencies like DTI and DOST and the Local Government Units.

Mr. Michael B. Nuñez giving his Welcome Remarks


Engr. Rosemarie G. Garcia during her lecture on Stabilized Brown Rice


The participants of the Business Opportunity Seminar on Stabilized Brown Rice


About ₱120K given to KSA amnesty availees under OWWA’s CARE Program

The Overseas Workers Welfare Administration Regional Welfare Office (OWWA RWO) 6 already released approximately one-hundred and twenty thousand pesos (₱120,000.00) to Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) who qualified for OWWA’S Cash Relief (CARE) Program.


As of June 13, 2017, a total of 24 OFWs in Western Visayas received financial assistance from the said program.


The CARE, a one-time financial grant worth five thousand pesos (₱5,000.00) given to undocumented OFWs and their dependents who applied for KSA’s 90-day amnesty program for overstaying expatriates and labor violators, is meant to shoulder the OFW-amnesty availees’ and their families’ incidental expenses upon their repatriation.


The first batch of CARE recipients availed of the aid after attending OWWA’s special orientation seminar, which was also participated by partner agencies like the Department of Labor and Employment, the LandBank of the Philippines, the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority, and the National Reintegration Center for OFWs last June 1, 2017. 


Mr. James Mendiola, Officer-In-Charge of OWWA Region 6, said that the office is expecting more amnesty availees to inquire about the program in the next few weeks.


Mr. Rony Barcelona, a former mechanic and one of the first CARE recipients, expressed gratitude for the help the office is extending to them.


“My fellow OFWs and I were undocumented for so long in Saudi. This assistance we received from OWWA and the government makes us glad that our pleas are actually heard,” he said.


Interested availees can visit the OWWA Region 6 office at 3rd Floor of Robinsons Place Iloilo City. They can also contact the regional office through (033) 3374484 and (033) 5091075, or at the Bacolod City satellite office at (034) 4322873.

The processing of the CARE applicants immediately began after OWWA’s special orientation program for KSA amnesty availees. 


(From top to bottom): Ms. Rizza Joy Mapa-Moldes, Overseas Workers Welfare Officer II, Ms. Conie Binarao, Officer-In-Charge of Programs & Services Division, and Ms. Jean Jover, Family Welfare Officer, aided in the distributing of the financial assistance.



Another batch of aspiring loan applicants underwent Enhanced Entrepreneurial Development Training conducted by the OWWA RWO 8 in partnership with the Department of Trade and Industry-Leyte last May 25, 2017 at the Negosyo Center, Eastern Visayas State University Campus, Tacloban City and was attended by twenty-two (22) loan applicants from the different parts of the region.


Participants were individually taught on how to prepare business plan by the DTI-Representative Ms. Wenna Jo Mantua. She also gave a short discussion and briefing on business management to the participants and provided useful tips that they can use as future entrepreneurs.


Since January 2017, more than one hundred loan applicants, active and inactive OWWA members, already underwent EEDT and were endorsed to Land Bank of the Philippines- Sagkahan Branch for assessment and approval.


EEDT is part of the social preparation given by OWWA to applicants of the OFW-Enterprise Development Loan Program (OFW-EDLP), an enterprise development intervention and loan facility of OWWA, in partnership with Land Bank of the Philippines (LBP) that intends to support enterprise development among OFWs and their families. 

Ms. Magbuan discussing business management to the participants of EEDT

OFWs honored on Migrant Workers’ Day 2017

The Overseas Workers Welfare Administration Regional Welfare Office (OWWA RWO) 6 gathered about two-hundred and one (201) OFWs and their families for this year’s Migrant Workers’ Day or “Araw ng Pasasalamat” at Robinsons Place Jaro, Iloilo City last June 7, 2017.


The activity is an annual celebration held in observance of the Migrant Workers and Overseas Filipinos Act of 1995, which sought to institute “a higher standard of protection and promotion of the welfare of migrant workers.”


Members from different regional OFW Family Circles provided the afternoon’s entertainment, while gift items like grocery packs, rice cookers, electric fans and other freebies were raffled out.



OWWA-Regional Welfare Office VIII congratulates Mr. Earl Antonell P. Doctolero, an EDSP scholar who graduated Cum Laude with a degree of Bachelor of Science in Tourism, Hotel and Restaurant Management (BSTHRM) at Leyte Normal University last March 29, 2017.


Mr. Doctolero has a single OFW brother and was an “active” OWWA member allowing him to take the EDSP qualifying examination for the batch 2013-2014.  Mr. Mark Elton P. Doctolero, brother of Earl, was a former Architect at Technical Vocational Training Corporation, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.


Earl’s father is working as a Private Electrician while his mother is a freelance Book-keeper. Earl’s financial assistance amounting to Php 60, 000.00 per school year was a big help to him and his family’s financial dilemma.


Currently, Earl is helping his brother manage their small family business while looking for a job.


Earl expressed his plan to take internship at any restaurants in America to acquire more experience in the food industry during his interview with OWWA. Also, part of his long term plans, is to establish a restaurant in the Philippines and establish his name as one of the minor, even major contributor in food industry in Region 8.  


“Thank you so much OWWA for giving me a chance to be part of your “happy” family. For being my guide and for pushing me to strive harder, farther and to always give my best” said Earl during his interview with OWWA staff.

Earl (third from right) pose with his friends after his graduation.


Mr. Doctolero (left) during his graduation rites last March 29, 2017



OWWA Region 6 formally opens search for 2017 Model OFW Family of the Year Award

The Overseas Workers Welfare Administration Region 6 formally announced its search for this year’s Model OFW Family of the Year Award (MOFYA) at the Migrant Workers’ Day celebration last June 7, 2017.  


The MOFYA aims to honor the sacrifices and contributions of Filipino migrants abroad by promoting stories of success from the different OFW communities.


In addition, the said award also intends to improve the image of OFW families by highlighting their roles as agents of socio-civic, educational, professional, and entrepreneurial advancement.


Two (2) outstanding OFW families per region (one each for the land-based and sea-based category) will be selected as regional winners, and only two winners per category will be determined as grand winners for the national level.


The criteria of the selection process include the following:

  • Wholesome OFW Family (50%);

  • Civic/Community Involvement of OFW and Family (20%);

  • Success in OFW and/or Family member/s education or profession (20%); and

  • Success in Managing Family Finances (10%).


Moreover, nominees should comply with the following requirements to qualify:

  1. The OFW, either single or married and with proof of OWWA membership, should head the family and may either be or formerly working abroad under a formal or informal employment contract or work permit;

  2. The OFW should have at least five (5) years of work experience;

  3. The OFW family should be known as an exemplary presence in the community; and

  4. The OFW family should be financially stable.


While individual nominations are not accepted, Mr. James Mendiola, Officer-In-Charge of OWWA Region 6, encourages Local Government Units, Non-Governmental Organizations, People’s Organization (POs), religious groups, and community-based socio-civic associations to nominate their choices of OFW families.


Interested groups can visit the OWWA Regional Office 6 at the 3rd floor of Robinsons Place Iloilo City for inquiries, or they can also be contacted at phone numbers (033) 337-4484/ 509-1075 or at their Bacolod City satellite office at (034) 432-2873.


Deadline of nomination and submission of documents is on September 7, 2017.


(FILE PHOTO): Mr. Nestor U. Tubongbanua and Family of Guimaras, Iloilo was the 2015 MOFYA national winner for the sea-based category.


Tuloy-Aral Beneficiary Thank OWWA for the Assistance

Niña May M. Bago is the youngest of the three (3) sisters. Her parents were separated long time ago and she lived with her mother. The one supporting her education was her elder sister, Menchie who previously worked in Qatar and is now in Dubai as clerk. Her mother is unemployed and their daily subsistence depends largely on the remittances of her sister.


Niña enrolled BS Electro-Mechanical Technology at Mindanao University of Science and Technology now University of Science and Technology of Southern Philippines in Cagayan de Oro City. In 2011, during her 2nd year in college, tropical depression “Sendong” submerged Cagayan de Oro City and her family saw the devastation of their small house including their belongings. OWWA-10 conducted profiling to those who are affected for extending possible assistance and her family was considered. She was included as beneficiary for the Tuloy-Aral Program. Through the facilitation of former Welfare Officer Leonor Mabagal of POLO-Greece, Alassia Newships Management Inc. became her sponsor and extend financial assistance until she graduated last March 2016.


Presently, Niña is working as a Safety Officer at Fresh Fruit Ingredients Inc. in Medina, Misamis Oriental. Niña extends her grateful appreciation to the generosity of Alassia Newships through the assistance she received in her schooling. She also thanked OWWA for coming-up with this kind of program that benefited the families of less fortunate OFWs.


OWWA Releases Financial Assistance to Earthquake Victims in SDN Town

June 13 – Seventy-five (75) more victims of the 6.7 magnitude earthquake from Surigao del Norte received the cash relief (Care) Assistance from the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration.

A total of Php 187,500.00 cash assistance were released from May 20 up to June 10, 2017. Ten (10) of which came from the municipality of Sison totaling to Php 28,500.00 and sixty-five (65) from Surigao City totaling 159,000.00.

The Cash Relief (CARE) Program is a one-time financial assistance extended to aid OWWA member families affected by the earthquake that struck the province earlier this year.

The agency is rolling out all its means to reach families in the affected municipalities that were hardest hit by the tremor in the province of Surigao Province namely Sison, San Francisco, Mainit, Malimono, and Surigao City.

Applications are gathered at the local PESO Offices in the above-cited municipalities and will be processed in the regional office alone. Said assistance will be released to grantees until the end of July 2017 only.

During the kick-off of the CARE Program on May 14, 2017 at the Provincial Convention Center, more than P500,000.00 was released to about 300 OFW families coming from Surigao City and a few barangays from the municipality of Sison.

The Overseas Workers Welfare Administration is granting financial assistance to tremor victims of Php3,000.00 per family of active OWWA members, and P1,500.00 per family of non-active members of the agency.

The program is pursuant to OWWA Board Resolution No. 006, Series of 2017, a pro-active stance in ensuring the welfare and well-being of the overseas Filipino workers (OFWs). 

OWWA Region 10 conducts info-campaign on Education for Development Scholarship Program (ODSP)

Mr. Eugene B. Mesias, Overseas Workers Welfare Officer III and Focal Person of the Degree Granting Scholarship Program was the guest of the “Birada Morning Program” of Mellow Touch 95.7FM last May 25, 2017 anchored by one of veteran radio broadcaster in Cagayan de Oro, Ronnie M. Waniwan. Mr. Mesias discussed the newly amended guidelines of the Education for Development Scholarship Program (EDSP) effective SY2017-18 and 2018-19. The enhanced guideline of EDSP includes the increased of scholarship slot for incoming first year college (SY2018-19) from 200 slots to 400 slots and allocation of 6 scholarship slots to those who are already in college (2nd yr to 5th yr) per province covered by Region 10.


The EDSP is a scholarship program that offers financial assistance to qualified dependents of active OWWA members who shall enroll or is currently enrolled in any four-year or five-year baccalaureate course in any college or university. A financial assistance of Sixty Thousand Pesos (Php60,000) per year shall be provided to the scholar. Eligible applicants must be a child of married OFWs or sibling of a single OFW or childless married OFWs. For incoming first year the applicant must be single, not more than 21 years of a  ge, Grade 12 graduating student, with a GWA of 80% and above and belongs to the upper 20% of the graduating class and belongs to the top 400 qualifiers of national qualifying examination administered by the Department of Science and Technology. For those who are already in college, an applicant must be single, not more than 30 years old and with a GWA not lower than B letter grade or 85% equivalence in all academic and non-academic subjects during the last school year attended in full load.


Filing of EDSP applications for incoming first year college (SY2018-19) start this June 2017 and for those in college is on first come first serve basis.