Tuesday, October 16, 2007

The Trials and Tribulations of being an OFW

The day my mother left us to work abroad was one of the saddest moments of our family life. I pity my two little brothers, they are too upset that our mother will left us for a long time.

In the life of a typical Filipino family, this situation is very common because parents would like to give better future to their loved ones especially for their children. Good opportunities in the Philippines are not abundant to achieve most of their dreams. Working abroad is one way of fulfilling these dreams. In the city of Baybay alone we can see lots of children left in their homes with their parents working abroad.

But working abroad will not always mean a good life for our parents there. Some may be very lucky to have a very kind employer but some may not. Some can get the perfect job that they really wanted, others cannot. Some gets high paying jobs, some do not. Some Overseas Filipino Workers have the opportunity to bring their families with them but some do not.

It is not good for our hardworking OFWs that they would be maltreated on abroad or even here. Take for example the Manila Standard Today columnist Malu Fernandez in her People Asia magazine article “From Boracay to Greece”. It doesn’t really necessarily mean that even though you are well-off here in the Phillipines and that you have an easy access to travel abroad then you can already maltreat them even with acerbic wit. Well anyway, there is even no wit on what she wrote. In her column, it is the OFW community in which she put into great shame, families, relatives and friends were also affected. Malu’s case is just one among many Filipinos who bigoted their own brothers and sisters. But this should not be tolerated by anyone. Filipinos who worked abroad are decent shedding their sweat and blood to raise one’s family and at the same time the whole country. The Philippine economy is kept afloat because of the big revenues of our fellows working abroad. Being away from our loved ones is not an easy thing to carry on ourselves, so think about them away from us in the colds. Well this is another thing that we should ponder on upon, instead of maltreating our overseas Filipino workers they should be praised and the ones we can be proud of.

Many trials are surrounding our Filipinos abroad and as mentioned earlier is being far from the family. Being far from our loved ones can often lead to the foundation of this relationship to become weak. Usual contractual jobs would last for two or more years. There are cases that an OFW who left his wife and children in the Philippines would be weak enough to give in to having an illegal relationship with others. But this does not happen only abroad, it could also happen with the spouse who was left behind.

Children were not guided properly. Sometimes, both parents are working abroad and children would only be left under the guidance of one of their relatives. Sometimes the guardian cannot fully discipline them that can cause children to be stubborn. Long separation also creates gaps between the parents and children; closeness with each other is not firm or strong anymore.

As a Filipino working abroad it is a must to save for the entire year but some of our relatives there earns nothing, and this is the common mistake. This is the reason why many Overseas Filipino Workers are coming back to the country for retirement but are not successful. Finding local jobs after working abroad is also a problem for the Ex-Overseas Filipino Workers. Some companies are choosy and don’t want to accept applicants whose job experience is outside Philippines. You can be accepted in a local job sometimes, but the salary would not be the same as when working abroad. That is why, although they would like to stay at home, they are forced to leave the country again and bear the hardships of being alone and far from loved ones….and so the cycle goes on.

The sacrifices of Overseas Filipino Workers cannot be avoided as they need to struggle to fulfill their dreams and to achieve success in life. Those hardships and sacrifices should bear sweet fruits rather than a bitter one. In the case of our OFW citizens living far away from the land where you really belong would definitely be a burden for anyone to carry. Let me share this to my fellow Filipino, OFWs worked hard not just for their selves, for their family but for the whole nation. Filipinos outside unite for the common goal, and maltreating them by foreign or even co-Filipinos should not be tolerated. We should proud of them rather than be ashamed of.

Saturday, October 6, 2007

LOLed at Bohol

Bugs Bunny!

in Sagbayan Peak

with my co-DT memebers

I die I die and I die when i stepped the land of magnificent Bohol.
Just recently went there a couple of weeks ago with mu co-VSU folkoloric dance troupe members.
It was a fun and exhilarating experience