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OWWA Region I joins IBP Law Week 2015

The Overseas Workers Welfare Administration Regional Welfare Office I (OWWA RWOI)  has joined in the celebration of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines’ Law Week 2015.


OWWA RWOI officers, through the invitation of the IBP La Union chapter, has reached out to the communities in La Union to provide orientation on OWWA Programs and Services last September 15, 2015.


Ms. Vera Andrei O. Ladio, La Union Family Welfare Officer, presented OWWA Programs and Services to around 300 barangay officials in Balaoan, La Union. Meanwhile, Justin Paul D. Marbella, Labor Communications Officer, also presented the same to a hundred barangay officials in Burgos, La Union.


Member-lawyers of the IBP La Union Chapter also gave lectures on Katarungang Pambarangay and the Republic Act 9262 or the Anti-Violence Against Women and Children Act of 2004.


The lectures aimed to empower barangay officials as the forefront enforcers of the law in the communities.


Atty. Marlon S. Corpuz, Lecture Series Program Coordinator, extended gratitude to OWWA for taking part in this noble activity, and hopes that it continues to reach out to communities to help OFWs and their families. 

La Union FWO Vera Andrei Ladio (left) and LCO Justin Paul Marbella (right) present OWWA Programs and Services to over 400 Barangay Officials and workers in Balaoan and Burgos, La Union, as part of the celebration of Law Week 2015 by the Integrated Bar of the Philippines. 


Cordillera Administrative Region

The OWWA Regional Welfare Office of Cordillera Administrative Region was able to extend its services to the beneficiaries under Skills for Employment Scholarship Program (SESP) which provides beneficiaries free training through a scholarship program under Technical Vocational Skills Training for any given course they chose and selected school they want to enroll.


There are at least 155 scholars who graduated under Skills for Employment Scholarship program which is given to all OFW and their dependents who are active members of OWWA. In the Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR), there are at least 220 scholars who enrolled for the year 2014 and out of them, 155 has already graduated under the scholarship program and received their National Certificate (NC) II which is being issued by TESDA.


The highest number who availed under the program are the OFW themselves totaling at least 69 beneficiaries who were on vacation at the time of their application or a finished contract worker OFW but with a valid OWWA membership during their application. This is to enhance the skills of every OFW beneficiary as necessary for their work overseas or as directed by their employer for purposes of promotion or job related function at work. Among the graduates were 74 spouses of OFWs who intended to find work overseas or preparation for those who have pending petition by the OFW for migration. Lastly, at least 47 graduates coming from the dependents of married OFWs including the siblings of single OFWs have availed for a vocational course as additional skill in preparation for their intended application for work locally or overseas.


The skills for employment program is a scholarship consisting of 1 year or 6 months of technical/vocational programs following the regular school year calendar, offered to land-based or sea-based OFWs or their beneficiaries/dependents in coordination with the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority  (TESDA).


Aside from the Skills for Employment Scholarship Program the OWWA extends its services under Seafarers Upgrading Program for active OWWA Members and are sea-based OFWs, who can avail of the trainings they need for upgrading. It is intended to provide job related expertise in priority maritime courses identified by the Maritime Training Council designed to upgrade knowledge and skills, develop expertise and update abilities in accordance with the technological advancements and international maritime standards.


For those who would like to avail and inquire of the program please feel free to visit your respective Regional Welfare Office located at 17 Magsaysay Avenue, Private Road, Baguio City. Please call us also on our landline (074) 445-2260 or (074) 300-3658.

OWWA Region I Condoles with Family of OFW who Died in Hongkong

The Overseas Workers Welfare Administration Regional Welfare Office I (OWWA RWOI) has extended its deepest sympathy to the family of the late Overseas Filipino Worker (OFW) who died after allegedly falling from a building in Hongkong on August 19, 2015.


In a visit to the OFW’s wake on September 3, 2015 in Sili, Naguilian, La Union, OWWA Personnel  Vera Andrei Ladio and Justin Paul Marbella have talked to the bereaved family to extend the agency’s sincere condolences.


The OWWA personnel also informed the family of the death and burial benefits left for them by the departed OFW, as she had an “active” OWWA Membership at the time of her death.


The OFW’s family will receive P100,000 as Death Benefit and P20,000 as Burial Benefit. They have been duly oriented of the application process which they will accomplish after the interment.


The family will also benefit from OWWA’s Education and Livelihood Assistance Program. Under the program, the deceased OFW’s spouse will receive P15,000 worth of items as livelihood assistance. Meanwhile, the deceased OFW’s eldest child will receive Education Assistance worth P5,000 per year if the child is in Elementary Level, P8,000 if High School Level, and P10,000 if College Level. 

La Union Family Welfare Officer Vera Andrei O. Ladio (center) speaks with the bereaved family of the OFW who died after allegedly falling from a building in Hongkong on August 19, 2015.

National Capital Region
RWO-NCR, PRAs strengthen shared responsibility in preparing HSWs for overseas work

The Regional Welfare Office-National Capital Region (RWO-NCR), in coordination with the OWWA-Policy and Program Development Office (PPDO), convened Philippine Recruitment Agencies (PRAs) for the consultation meeting on drafting the Table of Violations /Sanctions in implementing the Arabic Language Training Course (ALTC) for Household Service Workers (HSWs) bound for Middle East except the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia on 04 September 2015 at the OWWA Multi-Purpose Hall,10th Floor, OWWA Center Building, Pasay City.


The event was participated by the Philippine Recruitment Agencies (PRAs) authorized to conduct their in-house Arabic language training in the National Capital Region, namely: I-Rekrut Manpower, Inc., United Placeman Philippines, Inc., Mirben International Manpower Services, Meiden Way Management Specialist, Al Alamia International Manpower Services, Mothers’ Way Overseas Manpower Specialist Corp., MMML Recruitment Services, Inc., Hopewell Overseas Manpower Network, Inc., SMC Manpower Placement Agency Company, Asia World Recruitment, Inc., and Mardel International Management and Services, Inc.


In his opening message, Director Albert Q. Valenciano of the OWWA-PPDO lauded the meaningful contributions of the ALTC Providers in preparing HSWs for work in the Middle East. According to him, repatriation cases of HSWs from the Middle East dropped since the ALTC started in mid-2014.In his opening message, Director Albert Q. Valenciano of the OWWA-PPDO lauded the meaningful contributions of the ALTC Providers in preparing HSWs for work in the Middle East. According to him, repatriation cases of HSWs from the Middle East dropped since the ALTC started in mid-2014.


He also stressed the importance of pre-departure interventions to HSWs, particularly the language training, in preparing them for work overseas. He said, “a well prepared worker is an empowered worker.”


Director Emma V. Sinclair of RWO-NCR pointed out the importance of cooperation between OWWA and the ALTC Providers to ensure the effective conduct of the ALTC.


“We are happy that the ALTC Providers are very cooperative in improving our pre-departure interventions to the OFWs. We hope that with this new implementing guide [Table of Violations and Sanctions], we can guarantee that the ALTC Providers are giving the right interventions to the HSWs they are training.” said Director Sinclair.


The event resulted in the creation of a table of violations/sanctions acceptable to OWWA and the ALTC Providers. 


The ALTC is a three-day in house Arabic language training for HSWs bound for the Middle East except the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia conducted by authorized PRAs. It is intended to equip HSWs with the basic/ survival communications skills in the Middle East as a way of ensuring their welfare and well-being. 


Cordillera Administrative Region
308 OFWs Received Financial Relief Assistance From OWWA-CAR

The Overseas Workers Welfare Administration, Cordillera Administrative Region (OWWA-CAR) granted a total of PhP3,080,000.00 to 308 displaced OFWs and were repatriated from Libya and Yemen under its special program, the Financial Relief Assistance Program (FRAP).  Three Hundred Eight (308) repatriates were from Libya and four (4) from Yemen.  The recipients were displaced due to the political conflict in the said countries and they were adversely affected by the mandatory repatriation order issued by the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) when it was raised to Crisis Alert Level 4 over Libya on July 20, 2014 and last February 16, 2015 over at Yemen.


A financial assistance amounting to Ten Thousand Pesos (PhP10,000)  each was given to qualified displaced OFW to help him/her in facing their lives after arriving in the Philippines. The funds were made available by the OWWA in the seventeen (17) Regional Welfare Offices (RWO)  nationwide.


This Financial Relief Assistance Program (FRAP) was created as grant to displaced OFWs while undergoing economic and social adjustments in their communities. It aims to lessen the impact of unemployment and income displacement which will affect the repatriated OFWs to the country and can be availed by the repatriated OFW within six (6) months after arrival to the Philippines.


The OFW can avail of the financial assistance program by first, applying personally at the OWWA Regional Welfare Office (RWO); second, he/she must submit his/her passport or travel document and fill-up the application form; third, a series of checking of the eligibility of the applicant is done by the OWWA-RWO to verify the correctness of the documents submitted by the applicant; fourth, if all documents are complete and correct; fifth, the OWWA-RWO releases the cash assistance to the OFW and sixth, the OFW acknowledges his/her receipt of the cash assistance.


The implementation of the FRAP is nationwide and shall cease upon the announcement of the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) if the crisis alert level decreases from level 4 both in Libya and Yemen.

OWWA-CAR Officer-In-Charge Ms. Evelyn C. Laranang posed with the five (5) recipients among the latest 20 displaced OFWs from Libya and Yemen who received Ph P10,000.00 each under the Financial Relief Assistance Program (FRAP) on August 12, 2015.  

OFW dependents undergo Financial Literacy and Values Reorientation Seminars

Approximately 130 OFW dependents participated in Financial Literacy and Values Reorientation Seminar of OWWA Regional Welfare Office 8 at Pinabacdao (Western Samar), Macrohon (Southern Leyte, Hinunangan (Southern Leyte) and Carigara (Leyte)on August 4, 13, 14, and 20, respectively .


The attendees of the aforesaid seminars were members of some OFW Family Circles (OFCs) in the region organized by the OWWA, namely: Pinabacdao OFWs and Beneficiaries Organization (Pinabacdao), Sta Cruzanon OFWs & Families Organization (Macrohon), Hinunangan OFW Families Organization (Hinunangan), and Carigara OFWs and Beneficiaries Organization (Carigara).


As part of the agency’s commitment to equip the OFW families with relevant trainings, OWWA through its Values Reorientation Seminar aims to reinstill the essential values every family member must possess to strenghten family relationships.


On the one hand, Financial Literacy Seminar is geared towards helping the OFW families to be knowledgeable in handling their finances wisely and to ease the culture of dependency on remittances. Through this activity, the OFW dependents were able to acquire financial literacy skills needed to solve their financial issues and problems.


At present, OWWA also conducts other relevant trainings including Entrepreneurial Development training and Organizatonal Diagnosis to the OFW Family Circle members in the region. 

30 beneficiaries receive Education and Livelihood Assistance from OWWA RWO8

The OWWA Regional Office 8 through its Balik-Pinas, Balik-hanapbuhay program and Education and Livelihod Assistance Program (ELAP)released financial assistance to 30 qualified beneficiaries from Leyte province on August 27-28, 2015.


A total of 12 qualified OFWs from Tacloban, Ormoc, Tabango, Babatngon, Abuyog and Guiuan received starter kits amounting to Php 9, 500  each under the Balik-Pinas, Balik Hanapbuhay program. This program is intended to help distressed and displaced OFWs to start and operate a livelihood undertaking for self-employment by providing them with starter kits, relevant training, and technical assistance.  


Meanwhile, 5 OFW beneficiaries  from Isabel, Albuera, Palompon, Ormoc and Villaba West Leyte were provided with Php 14, 500 each worth of livelihood assistance intended for their chosen business while 13 OFW dependents  in elementary, high school, and college level in the same province received an education assistance of Php5,000, Php8000, and Php10,000, respectively.


ELAP is an OWWA program which aims at providing immediate relief to surviving dependents of deceased OFW. Through this program, OWWA endeavors to support, strengthen, and improve the lives of OFW families in the midst of their tribulations.


As of press time, OWWA also monitors 4 livelihood undertakings of ELAP beneficiaries in Ormoc, Palompon, and Carigara, Leyte to check the progress of their business activities. 

Lamayo on the go: OWWA MIMAROPA trains OFCs in Palawan fish processing

The Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA), with its intensified reintegration and livelihood programs for OFWs, has conducted a fish processing seminar-workshop as part of the Skills Development Training for OFW Family Circles (OFCs) last July 24, 2015 at Taytay Municipal Hall, Taytay, Palawan.


Thirty-five (35) participants from the OFCs of Taytay participated in the whole-day training which was partnered by the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority – Palawan Provincial Office (TESDA – Palawan). 


Ms. Lenny Tarrobago, Ms. Malou Remo, Ms. Mia Opeñano, Ms. Dignites Elijan, and Mr. Romanito Frias of OWWA and Ms. Milagros Sayang of TESDA taught the participants of market needs evaluation, basics of fish processing, and lamayo making in the aim to provide sustainable livelihood to the OFW communities in the MIMAROPA region.

OFW Family Circles, with the aid of OWWA and TESDA, are now ready for their new venture.Through the improvement of Lamayo industry and future skills development trainings, OWWA never ceases to care for our OFWs and their families.


“The economic development is a great contribution of the OFWs in the country, but we should not stop there. We must engage them in sustainable livelihood activities that will showcase their skills and trade which will provide further development in their respective communities as part of their reintegration process.”, OWWA Administrator Rebecca J. Calzado said.


OWWA MIMAROPA Regional Director Allan A. Ignacio assured the steadfast commitment of the RWO in the service to the OFWs. “Our commitment to strengthen the OFCs through Skills Development Trainings is just the beginning. The OWWA, especially the Regional Welfare Office, will continue to provide quality programs and services for the welfare and development of the OFWs”, he stated.


The Skills Development Training is one of the programs and services offered by the OWWA to address the welfare and reintegration needs of OFWs through aiding them in sustainable livelihood projects of OFW communities. OFWs from the MIMAROPA region who wish to participate in future trainings may contact their respective OFW Family Circle officers or inquire at the OWWA Regional Welfare Office at telephone numbers (02) 353-9016 and (02) 353-8986.

From a simple dish to a sustainable livelihood. OFW Family Circles were very excited in acquiring skills in fish processing as marketable quality product in their community.

Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas named OWWA Regional Welfare Office IV-B as its Outstanding Partner in Financial Learning Campaign in Region 4

Following the national Outstanding Partner Award given by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) last July 14, 2015, OWWA Administrator Rebecca J. Calzado is very elated that the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration – Regional Welfare Office IV-B (OWWA RWO IV-B) was again recognized by the national and regional body of the BSP as their Outstanding Partner in Financial Learning Campaign during an awards ceremony held last August 4, 2015 at Days Hotel, Tagaytay City, Cavite.


Directors Fernando Y. Silvoza, Francisco G. Dakila Jr., and Juan D. De Zuniga Jr. of the BSP welcomed during the ceremony representatives from various government agencies and the private sector, which includes development banks and respectable companies in regions 4A and 4B. Meanwhile, Assistant Governor for BSP Regional Monetary Affairs Sub-sector Gerardo S. Tizon, together with Directors Dakila and De Zuniga presented the awards in different categories that will be given to nominees whose achievements mirror the BSP’s commitment for financial development and stability of their fellow Filipinos.


The OWWA RWO IV-B was commended by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas as their national and regional Outstanding Partner in Financial Learning Campaign which elevated the quality of life of the OFWs in MIMAROPA through intensive financial learning campaigns and trainings. This also boosted the economy and ensure sustainable livelihood, not only of OFW communities, but also of the region.


The financial learning campaigns launched by OWWA IV-B, with the help of the OFW Family Circles (OFCs) and OFW Desk Officers of each province, include Entrepreneurship Development Trainings and Financial Literacy Trainings that are part of the reintegration program offered by OWWA.  The Regional Welfare Office in partnership with different stakeholders like the BSP also advocates inclusive socio-economic development in the region with the aid of OFWs through the OFCs.


Ms. Aquilina C. Tarobago, chief of the Programs and Services Division, received the award in behalf of the RWO IV-B.


As of date, OFCs in MIMAROPA continue to strengthen and develop their employment-generating ventures for the socio-economic development and creation of sustainable livelihood projects for their provinces with the assistance of OWWA.


Recognizing the reintegration process as a vital part of the migration cycle, OWWA IV-B Regional Director Allan A. Ignacio assures OFWs that the OWWA, through its Regional Welfare Offices, will continue to implement financial learning campaigns and entrepreneurship development trainings as part of OWWA’s commitment to promote the rights and welfare of our OFWs and their families. 

Ms. Aquilina C. Tarrobago (fourth from the left), chief of the Programs and Services Division of OWWA IV-B, and its staff received the award in behalf of the RWO whose efforts in financial learning campaigns were recognized by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas.