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PIA Press Release

Displaced OFWs avail of OWWA lending program

Iloilo City (18 February) -- The regional office of the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) in Western Visayas said that around 47 displaced overseas Filipino workers (OFWs)in the region have already applied for its lending program as of February 17, 2009.

Under the OWWA's lending program or the Filipino Expatriate Livelihood Support Fund (FELSF), OFWs displaced due to global financial crisis can borrow up to P50,000 to start a livelihood project or business enterprise after accomplishing all needed requirements.

FELSF is part of the Comprehensive Livelihood and Emergency Program of President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo that aims to protect the most vulnerable sectors including the returning expatriates from threat and consequences of reduced or lost of income due to the global economic crisis.

OWWA 6 Family Welfare Officer Rizza Mapa said the 47 displaced overseas workers are part of the 55 who availed of the services of their Help Desk set up in their office at Gen. Luna Street, Iloilo City, as of February 17.

Of the 55 displaced workers, 27 are from the province of Iloilo, 23 from Negros Occidental, 3 from Guimaras and 1 each from the provinces of Antique and Aklan.

Data obtained from OWWA 6 indicated that no displaced OFW from the province of Capiz have sought the OWWA 6 Help Desk during the period.

Mapa said most of the affected overseas workers came from Taiwan while others came from destinations like United Arab Emirates and Qatar. Most of the displaced overseas workers went home due to retrenchment.

Mapa added that 18 of the 55 displaced OFWs have also availed of the skills training from the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority while 12 others were referred to recruitment agency for easy or immediate deployment.

The Help Desk was among the first measures set up by OWWA, an attached agency of the Department of Labor and Employment to help OFWs adversely affected by the global financial crisis. (PIA) [top]

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