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Arnell Ignacio shares OWWA’s programs to OFWs

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Article by Agnes R. Chupungco

Mr. Arnaldo Arevalo Ignacio, deputy executive director of the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA), served as resource person of a seminar titled “OWWA’s Initiatives for Displaced OFWs” held at the REDREC Auditorium, College of Economics and Management (CEM) last July 10. He is popularly known as Arnell Ignacio in the showbiz industry.

The seminar provided a platform for a dialogue among stakeholders on the various programs and activities of OWWA for the welfare of the Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs), particularly those who were forced to return to the Philippines due to uncertainties and bad experiences in the workplace.   

In his message, Mr. Ignacio said that Filipinos should think twice before getting employment abroad. They should have information first of how much their salary would be, how much they would be spending in the foreign country, what kind of food they would be eating, how much money they would be able to send home, and how much savings they would have versus loneliness and being homesick. Also, OFWs should be taught financial literacy or how to handle and manage their hard-earned money.

He stressed that it is important for OFWs to study and learn first the culture and traditions of the country of destination. This will enable them adapt to the way of life of their country of destination and help them not to commit serious mistakes, which could be detrimental to their safety. Thus, he proposed to have an OFW Academy wherein the situation in the foreign country will be simulated so that OFWs would be able to learn the way of living, the food, religion, and others before they go abroad.

Staff of various local government units in CALABARZON, members of OFW organizations, UPLB employees, and some private individuals participated in the seminar. The Center for Strategic Planning and Policy Studies (CSPPS) of CPAf sponsored the event. The Center has been conducting seminars to provide a venue for promoting public awareness on various policy issues related to governance and rural development.

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