Press Releases
DOLE CALABARZON Pays Tribute to Modern-Day Heroes With 1.8M Livelihood Grants in Laguna

“Dubbed as the nation’s new heroes, the diaspora of working Filipinos abroad deserves no less than the State’s support to thrive on their own homeland the moment they decide to return to their roots,” DOLE IV-A OIC-Assistant Regional Director, Atty. Nepomuceno A. Leaño, II.

For Maria, the only hope for a mother of two and a grandmother of two more is taking chances as an overseas Filipino worker. She would also worry for her sick sister living together with them. Although her husband is employed, his daily wage is not enough to cover the entire household expenses.

The promise of a well-paying job twice or thrice the local wage has enticed Maria to be a domestic helper in the Middle East. Little did she know that she will be bound home after a year due to maltreatment by deprivation. Her daily routine involves working long hours hardly with any sleep that she would make the most of three or four hours every day.  Not only that, the three meals she used to have back in the Philippines have been reduced to a single one resulting to starvation.

Soon, Maria sought help from the government to be repatriated at once. With the flight restrictions brought about by the pandemic, it took several months before she got to fly home. The Philippine Overseas Labor Officer who rendered assistance had to persuade her employer to let her go.

While Maria no longer needs to endure the hunger and lack of sleep, she would sometimes stay awake at night thinking about the family’s financial condition. This is why she was elated upon learning of the DOLE Integrated Livelihood Program that provides financial assistance to members of the vulnerable sector of the society. It was an answered prayer for someone who has almost lost hope.

Maria happens to be one of the sixty OFWs who received livelihood packages worth almost Php30,000.00. Most beneficiaries received grocery items to put up a convenience store with two who opted for some gardening supplies. At least they could have something to contribute in the household budget.

There was an awarding ceremony on 8 February 2021 at the Cultural Center in the Provincial Government compound. DOLE Laguna Provincial Office Director Guido R. Recio distributed livelihood grants to the beneficiaries relating that, “From here, we will be monitoring your progress to help you grow further through livelihood enhancement assistance after three years of successful operation.”

Governor Ramil L. Hernandez, who has also been giving away financial assistance to constituents, joined the ceremony in support of the program to help locals cope with current economic conditions.

It was through the Provincial PESO represented by Ms. Mary Jane B. Corcuerra that the OFWs were reached for government intervention as a way of giving back to overseas workers.

DOLE Laguna’s Livelihood Unit, through provincial focal, Ms. Lorena M. Gacosta, has kept its doors open to returning OFWs who might stay for good given the opportunity to start and sustain an enterprise.

Recipients were all smiles under those face masks and face shields. It shows in their eyes with the glimmer of hope for a good start. The joy of receiving this kind of blessing shows amid the social distancing measures imposed.

Chances are, this is the perfect way to say welcome and thanks to these modern-day heroes.

By:

Rudyboy R. Sinay
Senior LEO/LPO LIO
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2021-03-19
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