The Provincial Government of Pangasinan has awarded P5,000 each to 25 displaced Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) on March 26 in Lingayen through the Tulong Pangkabuhayan sa OFW Project.
A component of the Abig Pangasinan recovery program initiated by Governor Amado I. Espino III, the Tulong Pangkabuhayan aims to provide financial assistance to displaced OFWs as their start-up capital for livelihood ventures.
Second District Board Member Nestor D. Reyes, who led the brief awarding ceremony, disclosed that that the financial assistance is one way of the provincial government in recognizing the efforts and sacrifices of Pangasinense OFWs.
“Ito ay isang tulong o pagsuporta sa ating mga kababayan na napabalik na wala sa panahon because of the pandemic at alam din natin ang sakripisyo nila abroad na iniwan ang pamilya para maghanapbuhay doon,” said BM Reyes.
Assuring that the provincial government led by Governor Espino, along with the Pangasinan provincial board, is committed in sustaining meaningful projects for the OFW sector, the second district board member also stated, “We care a lot for them… nasa labas man sila o nasa atin, ang iniisip po natin ay ang ating mga kababayan.”
The beneficiaries of the financial assistance are selected by migrant desk officers of every local government unit in the province based on the following criteria: cause of repatriation, number of months/years OFW worked abroad, and economic situation.
“Kay Governor Espino, maraming salamat po sa opportunity sa tulad naming OFW na nabigyan kami ng chance na makatanggap ng chance at sa programa niyo po,” said Melisa Diata Cruz, one of the 25 beneficiaries.
The beneficiaries also engaged in financial management training administered by the Provincial Population, Cooperative and Livelihood Development Office (PPCLDO).
The Tulong Pangkabuhayan sa OFW Project, administered by the Provincial Employment Service Office (PESO), is the second phase of the assistance of the provincial government to the displaced OFWs who were also accommodated by the Tulong Sundo sa OFW Program of the province.
The local government unit of Lingayen also commended the program of the provincial government that provides assistance to financially-challenged OFWs during this health crisis.
“Make sure that the P5,000 that will be handed over to you will really benefit you and make it grow,” Mayor Leopoldo Bataoil urged the beneficiaries.
Also present during the program were: Lingayen Vice Mayor Judy Vargas, Lingayen Councilor Jasper Pasion, Lingayen PESO Manager Benjie Gumapos at Lingayen OFW President Maria Teresa Broqueza.
It was noted that Lingayen is the 15th LGU visited by the Tulong Pangkabuhayan. Other LGUs visited earlier were as follows: Agno, Alcala, Balungao, Mangaldan, Natividad, Sta. Barbara, Infanta, Sison, Aguilar, Binmaley, Anda, Sta. Maria, Malasiqui and Alaminos City.
The next Tulong Pangkabuhayan will be staged in Rosales, the PESO also noted.
/Shiella Mae C. De Guzman