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PIA Press Release

NARS program benefits idle local nurses

By Mai Gevera

Davao City (16 June) -- Hyled Joy Lansaderas, a 24 year old graduate of Nursing from the Holy Name University in Bohol, is one of the second batch of NARS Program beneficiaries to be deployed in Maco, Compostela Valley Province.

Two years without a stable source of income, Joy immediately applied for a temporary employment through NARS.

After passing the licensure exam for nurses, Joy thought that she could land a job and repay her parents. But opportunities seemed so bleak that she was forced to work in a private hospital on an on-call basis.

"I only get P200 per shift but only called twice a week. This means the highest pay I could get in a month is only P1,600," Joy shared.

She stressed that this income could not even pay for her personal expenditure more so with the hope of supporting her family. With a very limited income, Joy found it so difficult to process her exams and papers for overseas employment.

This made her hopeless for a while until she heard about the brighter offer from the national government through the NARS Program.

NARS is an on-the-job training cum community service program where successful applicants will be paid P8,000 in allowance with an additional P2,000 to be shouldered by the local government.

The said program requires nurses to be locals in the community where they would serve. Instead of hiring city folks, the program now opt for locals to lessen the costs and at the same time expect their compassion to serve their own locality.

When asked what made the program attractive in the eyes of Joy, she immediately answered because of a more attractive offer. Getting P10,000 per month is already sufficient for Joy as compared to her previous compensation.

"I don't care if I will be assigned to a far-flung barangay. At least now, I can serve my community and be assured of a better pay," she said.

Joy admitted that this experience will be used as she applies for overseas employment. Foreign hospitals now seek for qualifications like actual work experience and specialization. For her, getting an experience in a real rural setting could even give her an edge in her future career plans.

Launched by President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo during the Multi-Sectoral Summit on "Joining Hands Against the Global Crisis" held recently in Malacaņang Palace , the NARS program is a collaborative undertaking of the DOLE, the Department of Health (DOH), and the Professional Regulations Commission's Board of Nursing (PRC-BON). (PIA XI) [top]

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