Supporting families of OFWs
With a husband who has been an overseas Filipino worker (OFW) for 11 years now, and with three children with me, I find good news in “To help OFWs” (Editorial, 1/22/18). The basic notion of reaching out to these modern-day heroes and their families who are left behind, is to me, a grand welcome.
It’s a known fact that the Philippines is among the world’s largest labor-sending countries. With over 10 million overseas workers scattered across the globe, it’s commendable that President Duterte saw it fit to put up a bank for OFWs.
The inception of an Overseas Filipino Bank (OFB), which is exclusive for OFWs that would offer better services than those currently provided by private banks and remittance firms, is by all means favorable.
But the country, more than the issue on establishing a banking facility, is also challenged with other pressing concerns of OFW families like broken marriages, shattered lives of children, unmanaged funds, etc.
Hence, the much-needed help from our government need not only be on the financial aspect. The accumulation of money is not the only point for discussion for these growing number of OFW families and their children who continuously struggle for a better life. There are other forms of valuable assistance and programs that could be extended to the loved ones of these OFWs because, after all, the huge remittance from these modern-day heroes keeps our economy afloat.
In the Diocese of Cubao, we have programs for families of overseas Filipinos and family and life ministry for migrants. Volunteer work for the said ministries opened my eyes to other equally struggling members of our society who need emotional and psychological comfort to get through with the Herculean task of raising children by their lonesome. Strong support system matters for families to remain strong.
The foundation of a strong society is the family. Sadly, with migration, many families are at risk.
The church, government and nongovernment organizations must join forces in saving and helping—may it be financial or otherwise— all our OFW families.
BELEN DOCENA-ASUELO, email@example.com
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