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During the past couple of months, a total of 409 OFWs and their families were given basic orientation on OFW Enterprise Development Loan Program (OFW-EDLP) by OWWA Regional Welfare Office (RWO) IV-A. The said EDLP orientation was conducted during the Financial Literacy seminar held on 27 September, 15 October and 22 October at Brgy. Quisao, Pililia Rizal, Tanauan City, Batangas and Brgy Sabang, Ibaan, Batangas, respectively, in collaboration with Metrobank and the LGUs.


Ms. Emily Millanes, Senior Manager, Remittance Service Department of Metrobank facilitated the training on Financial Literacy using the bank’s module on Savings and Money Management while RWO IV-A lectures on EDLP were delivered by its respective provincial Family Welfare Officers (FWOs).


The OFW-EDLP aims to help OFWs and their families in the establishment of viable business enterprise that will provide them with steady income stream and create employment opportunities in their community. Financial Literacy is about sustaining and safeguarding meager earnings for sound money management to address the challenges of saving cash in facing economic difficulties for the future. Likewise, it is a tool to reduce the value of possible financial meltdown for struggling families.


“If you could get the courage to begin, you have the courage to succeed.”

Sports Fest Kick Off Ceremony

Koronadal City – The Overseas Workers Welfare Administration – Regional Welfare Office XII participated in the kick-off ceremony of the quarter-long celebration of the DOLE RCC Sports Festival, 2016.  The said activity was spearheaded by its attached agencies last October 14, 2016 held at DOLE Region XII Compound.


The DOLE RCC Sports Festival is a friendly match between employees of the Department of Labor and Employment XII and its attached agencies in line with the celebration of its 83rd founding anniversary.


OWWA XII belongs to Team Attached Agencies or Team AA as they call themselves along with other agencies namely Philippine Overseas Employment Agency (POEA), National Reintegration Center for OFWs (NRCO), Regional Tripartite and Wages Productivity Board (RTWPB) and National Legal and Reconciliation Commission (NLRC).

OWWA XII Team in their Sports uniform

The kick-off ceremony was also witnessed by DOLE XII employees, The Green Team, and the employees from Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), the Blue team. The opening program highlights the ceremonial lightning of the torch and the recitation of the oath of sportsmanship. Furthermore, it also showcased the presentation of various teams rehearsed weeks ago to show dedication and eagerness to be called “champions” in this year’s RCC Sports Festival.


The three teams will compete for these games: Basketball (Men and Women), Volleyball (Men, Women and Mixed) and Darts. The game schedules will be announced every after game as it will follow round-robin system. The awarding ceremony is expected to take place on December 8, 2016 during the closing ceremony.

DOLE RCC XII- (NCMB, NLRC, OWWA, RTWPB, POEA, TESDA, DOLE and Labor Union) Regional Heads as Team Leaders Initiated the Ceremonial Flying of colors and Lighting of the Sports Festival Urn.

Officer In Charge, Marlyn E. Jamero encouraged her staff to join in various events of the Sports Festival, saying “This is our simple way of developing bond and solidarity with our partner agencies that help us promote and protect the welfare of our Modern Heroes, the OFWs.”

Committee on Labor, Employment & Human Resource Development Committee on Foreign Relations holds Legislative Hearing

COTABATO CITY – The Overseas Workers Welfare Administration – Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (OWWA-ARMM) Regional Director Amy B. Crisostomo and Chief of Programs and Services Odin T. Abdula, together with the other members of the Committee on Labor and Employment attended and actively participated in the hearing on October 4, 2016 at Regional Legislative Assembly (RLA) Building, ORG Compound, Cotabato City.


The Committee Members of the Committee on Labor, Employment and Human Resource Development Chairman Hanibal H. Tulawie and Members of the Committee on Foreign Relations held a legislative hearing to discuss the rampant issuance of altered birth certificates to minors from the ARMM and to asses/evaluate the situation of our fellow ARMM Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA).


During the hearing, proposed resolutions were introduced. Proposed Resolution No. 13, entitled: “A resolution directing the committee on justice to conduct an inquiry, in aid of legislation, on the rampant issuance of altered birth certificates to minors from the ARMM who are supposedly applying for passports in order to apply to work abroad, with end in view of identifying system loopholes and recommending reforms in the issuance and authentication process of related requirements in applying for passports in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM).”


Second, Proposed Resolution No. 25 entitled: “A resolution urging the regional government through the office of the regional governor to assess and evaluate the situation of our ARMM Overseas Filipino Workers (OFW) working in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and provide measures for assistance and support thereof.”


OWWA-ARMM Regional Director said that OWWA addressed the plight of OFWs in KSA through the Relief Assistance Program (RAP).


RAP is a crisis intervention program consists of a one-time grant of financial assistance provided to the affected OFWs to help them and their families cope with economic and social adjustments.


“As of 3 October 2016, the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA-ARMM) assisted a total of 92 OFWs and their families affected by financial difficulties in 9 big firms in Kingdom Saudi Arabia. The figures include OFWs already repatriated and the stranded OFWs’ families in the Philippines,” Director Crisostomo said.


“OWWA has always been true to its mandate, primarily in protecting and promoting the well-being and delivering welfare services and benefits to all OFW members. We encourage OFWs to update and renew their membership with OWWA because when worst comes to worst, they can avail of OWWA’s programs.” she added.


Vice-Chair Irene P. Tillah, RLA Assemblywoman stressed the need of cooperation of the different LGU’s, government entities and other private agencies to address the concerns on the plight of the OFWs and to minimize victims of illegal recruitment.


RLA Assemblywoman Pearl Joy Piang urged the committee to advocate more an intensive information drive of the programs and services of their agencies.


The hearing also discussed the possible establishment of Public Employment Service Office (PESO) in ARMM which is essential to the fulfillment and equality of employment opportunities.

Celebrating Academic Achievement: OWWA-ARMM ODSP Scholar Graduated with Latin Honors

COTABATO CITY – Adnan A. Nasalin, a graduate of Bachelor of Science in Nursing graduated  Cum Laude award during the 7th Commencement Exercises of Hardam Furigay Colleges Foundation, Inc., Basilan on April 15, 2016.


Adnan is a recipient of the OFW Dependent Scholarship Program (ODSP). He is the son of Mr. Jahar A. Nasalin and Mrs. Saripa A. Nasalin from Bato, Lamitan City, Basilan. His sister, OFW Husna A. Nasalin works as a Household Service Worker (HSW) in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) which qualified Adnan to avail of the Agency’s educational assistance program.


Adnan expressed his sincere thanks to everyone who supported him throughout his journey.


“I would like to extend my deepest gratitude to you, the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration of ARMM for accepting me as one of your scholars. Truly, the scholarship is a great help to me in order to pursue my dreams. You are one of my heroes; OFWs are heroes, “Bagong Bayani ng Pilipinas”. Our sacrifices are nothing compare to them.


In addition, I would like to extend my sincerest gratitude to my two OFW sisters who toiled hard so I can finish my studies.  The honor I received is not just for me, it’s for all of us. May you continue to bestow, help and motivate the youth of ARMM in pursuing their studies.


Thank you OWWA-ARMM and I am proud to be a scholar!”


Adnan never gave up in achieving his goal of finishing his studies. His perseverance and persistence finally paid off.


“We at OWWA are as proud as Nasalin’s parents. He responded really well to the challenge to become the best in his field of specialization. Indeed, his achievements are both remarkable and inspiring,” Director Crisostomo said.

OWWA Region 1 Joins 21st Seafarers' Day Celeb

The Overseas Workers Welfare Administration Regional Welfare Office I (OWWA RWOI) joined the celebration of the 21st National Seafarers’ Day with the theme- “Marinong Pilipino: Tatak ng Kahusayan,” last October 8, 2016 in Caba, La Union.


Spearheaded by the Diocesan Ministry for the Pastoral Care of Migrants and Itinerant People (DMMI), the activity seeks to promote the welfare of the Filipino seafarers and their families. 


More than 300 participants attended the activity, majority of which are students of maritime schools, diocesan schools and other public high schools in La Union. Also present were representatives from government agencies such as the OWWA, Philippine Ports Authority, Philippine Navy, MARINA, Commission on Human Rights, and the Department of Social Welfare and Development.


The whole-day activity began with a Eucharistic Celebration at the St. John the Baptist Parish Church, Caba, La Union. Other activities were performances and a lecture on legal concerns governing the seafaring profession.


At present, there are 4,840 active sea-based OWWA members in Region 1.

La Union FWO Khristian Paul Maglaya (2nd from left) and OFW Leader Evelyn Dulay (leftmost) joined in the celebration of the 21st National Seafarers’ Day with the theme-Marinong Pilipino: Tatak ng Kahusayan last October 8, 2016 in Caba, La Union.
Maritime students in La Union took part in the celebration of the 21st National Seafarers’ Day last October 8, 2016 in Caba, La Union with the theme: Marinong Pilipino: Tatak ng Kahusayan.


OWWA Provides Medical Assistance To OFW Villar

Davao City – The newly appointed OWWA Administrator, Hans Leo J. Cacdac, together with OWWA-RWO XI Regional Director Eduardo E. Bellido, personally handed the medical assistance amounting to Fifty Thousand Pesos (P50,000.00) to OFW Marichu Tampol Villar  last October 6, 2016 at the Davao del Sur Provincial Hospital, Digos City. The said amount will help her defray cost of medicines, laboratories, EENT examination and CT Scan after suffering from severe maltreatment from her employer.


OFW Villar, 29 years old, from Brgy. Manga, Matanao, Davao del Sur worked as a Household Service Worker for two years (August 20, 2014-September 29, 2016) in Doha, Qatar. During her employment, she was subjected to physical and verbal abused by the wife of her employer. She sustained first degree burns on her face,  legs, back and other parts of the body. She also has bruises in her head which was the result of banging and being hit by hard objects.


When she arrived home last September 30, 2016, she was immediately taken to Davao del Sur Provincial Hospital by her family and relatives for immediate medical attention.


The OWWA Regional office came to know of her case through her cousin Junel Villar who sent her photos to the region’s facebook account and e-mail last October 4, 2016 with the report of POLO Qatar. According to Junel, he posted it in the social media to draw attention and ask justice for Marichu.


Admin Cacdac said, aside from the medical assistance, OFW Villar will also be entitled to livelihood assistance under the Balik-Pinas Balik-Hanapbuhay program, a scholarship grant for any short-term courses worth P14,500.00, and disability assistance which will be determined after her EENT examination and check-up. Likewise, she will be provided with legal assistance during the filing of case against her employer. “Marichu, her son and family will be provided with psycho-social counseling to cope up with their traumatic experience”, the administrator added.


Despite of what had happened, OFW Villar remained strong and resolute and willing to file a case against her employer. OWWA, on the other hand, assured the family of support in pursuing the case. Margarita Villar, mother of Marichu, expressed her heartfelt gratitude to OWWA for all the support extended to them.

OWWA-ARMM Inks Memorandum of Agreement with the Academe

COTABATO CITY – To intensify its education program for OFWs and their dependents, the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration – Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (OWWA-ARMM) has inked a Memorandum of Agreement with two schools last September 6, 2016.


The signing were led by OWWA-ARMM Regional Director Amy B. Crisostomo with Elma L. Maliga, school president of Sapakan National High School, Rajah Buayan, Maguindanao, in the presence of OWWA-ARMM FWO Moctar S. Ulama and Mayor Engr. Zamsamin L. Ampatuan, CESO I, and Bonifacio E. Valdez, MD., PhD, president of VMC Asian College Foundation, Inc., Tacurong City.


The agreement strengthens the partnership between the agency and the said schools in providing Skills-to-Employment Scholarship Program (SESP) to the clients, specifically to OWWA members and their beneficiaries in the area.


“Rest assured that VMC Asian College Foundation, Inc. will continue to promote excellent standard and assist students to become productive members of the society,” Valdez said.


On the other hand, expressing gratitude for the privilege given, Maliga said he looks forward to a fruitful partnership.


Director Crisostomo said OWWA-ARMM continues to seek for prospective partners to provide the agency’s scholars a wider range of options in selecting the right schools that could best meet their needs and interests.

National Capital Region
RWO-NCR Conducts Skills Training on Personal Care Products at Pasig City Hall

The Regional Welfare Office – National Capital Region (RWO-NCR), in partnership with Ultima Entrepinoy Forum Center, conducted a free training on personal care products last 05 October 2016 at the Pasig City Hall.


Mary Rose Rivera from Ultima Entrepinoy Forum Center spoke to about 50 members of OFW Family Circles (OFCs) who attended the event. She demonstrated the process of making dishwashing liquids, hand sanitizers, and lotions for personal use and business.


“Some of the benefits of creating your own personal care products include being able to ensure the quality of the products while earning and supporting your families. All we need are the right materials, instructions, and hard work,” encouraged Ms. Rivera.


Pasig City OFC President Susan Jarina heartily agreed and encouraged all the participants to apply what they learned.


Let us all make sure that the knowledge and materials that we obtain today don’t just stay in our heads or inside our cabinets. We should work together to help our families and our communities,” Ms. Jarina remarked.


Family Welfare Officer Carlyn Dungca was overjoyed with the outcome of the training. “Hopefully through skills trainings like these, may the OFCs be more empowered to maximize their skills and time while their relatives are working outside of the country,” she said.


The RWO-NCR provides free skills trainings to members of OFCs as part of OWWA’s community-based programs and interventions for OFWs and their dependents.

(From left to right: Mary Rosa Rivera from Ultima Entrepinoy Forum Center facilitates training on personal care products; Pasig City OFCs listen attentively to the speaker; Ms. Rivera demonstrates how to create hand sanitizers and other similar products; OFC members take a closer look at the materials and products; Ms. Rivera gives free samples of products created; OFC members pose with training facilitator.)


OWWA RWO XII in convergence with DTI XII conducts Enhanced Entrepreneurial Development Training

KORONADAL CITY – The Overseas Workers Welfare Administration Regional Welfare Office XII (OWWA RWO-XII) in partnership with Department of Trade and Industry Regional Office XII (DTI RO 12) thru Negosyo Centers, conducted Enhanced Entrepreneurial Development Training (EEDT) to aspiring migrant workers entrepreneurs. This convergent training is in line with the implementation of Enterprise Development and Loan Program (EDLP), an enhanced Reintegration program of said agency.


It soughts to equip OFWs and their dependents in the establishment of viable business enterprise that will provide them with a steady income stream and create employment opportunities in their community.   


The first tranche of EEDT was held on October 4-5, 2016 at DTI- Negosyo Center General Santos City and actively participated by sixteen (16) committed prospective OFW entrepreneurs. Participants were given training/workshops in choosing the right enterprise that would their skills and passion.  Crafting of a simplified business proposal and financial management were also introduced to them.


The same training will also be conducted to all qualified OFWs and their dependents, who wish to avail the said loan facility program in the different partner DTI-Negosyo Centers in SOCCSKSARGEN Region.


The OFW-EDLP, formerly known as OFW-Reintegration Program (OFW-RP), is an enterprise development intervention and loan facility of the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) in partnership with Landbank of the Philippines (LBP) and the Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP) intended to support enterprise development among OFWs and their families.

Figure 1. Ms. Kristine Marie H. Sison, OWWO III / Program Manager conducts the Orientation about the Program.
Figure 3-A. Ms. Sharon B. Medicillo, DTI Business Consultant speaks about Business Appreciation.
Figure 2-B. Mr. Regi Jan Villaruel, DTI Business Consultant Introducing Ideas on how to Start the Business.


OWWA Awarded Outstanding Regional Partner by BSP in Implementing Advocacy on the Conduct of Public Info Campaign

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY – Third in a row, Overseas Workers Welfare Administration Regional Welfare Office X (OWWA RWO X) has been awarded once again as the Outstanding Regional Partner in Cagayan de Oro City in Implementing BSP’s Advocacy on the Conduct of Public Information.  It was conducted during the 2016 Award Ceremony and Appreciation lunch for Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Stakeholders of Region 10 and Caraga last Sept. 6, Tuesday, at the Mallberry Suites Business Hotel, Osmeña St., Cagayan de Oro City.


OIC-RD Roseller D. Bartolome received the award given by BSP Monetary Board Member Felipe M. Medalla.


The event, which is now on its 13th year, is held annually to show gratitude to its stakeholders who have continuously supported the BSP’s statistical undertakings, information needs and advocacy programs and effectively deliver BSP’s functions through OWWA’s Pre- Departure Orientation Seminar.


Right before the event formally started, an audio- visual presentation was played with the theme “Sustained Partnership, Sustained Economic Growth” followed by the welcome remarks of Iluminada T. Sicat, Managing Director of the Regional Monetary Affairs Sub-sector.


The event closed with all the awardees chunked in a group photo together with the BSP officials and a sumptuous lunch afterwards.