Close to 1.2 million overseas Filipino workers have been provided with repatriation and reintegration assistance by the Department of Labor and Employment, through the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA).

Labor Secretary Silvestre H. Bello III said 1,170,514 OFW received welfare and protection programs, including reintegration and repatriation services from OWWA, and other DOLE regional offices and attached agencies.

From July 2017 to October 2017, the intensified reintegration programs of DOLE have benefitted 54,470 OFW returnees and their families, where 28,256 of which underwent skills training, while 26,214 OFWs were granted with livelihood assistance.

On the same period 36,438 OFWs have been repatriated by OWWA, which 19,268 OFWs from the Middle East were provided with on-site assistance and P20,000 financial aid.

9,512 repatriated OFWs were also given additional cash grants of P6,000, and 13,245 OFWs were given with food and hygiene kits.

Following the conclusion of the 90-day amnesty program of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for undocumented and stranded foreign nationals, OWWA also recorded a total of 15,839 Filipino migrant workers who availed of the amnesty, while 10,011 of which were repatriated to the Philippines.

Under the Operation Bring-Them-Home of OWWA for OFWs in the Middle East, the DOLE released a total of P514,412,350.21 million to provide various assistance to OFWs, such as food and hygiene kits, legal counseling and stress debriefing, medical and psycho-social services, and training assistance to affected OFWs.

OWWA also provided post-repatriation services to 14,165 OFWs, 4,343 of which have received welfare services, including medical, psychosocial counseling, stress debriefing, transport, and accommodation, while 1,630 have been listed for employment facilitation or training services, and 2,625 were provided with livelihood assistance.

In addition, DOLE provided legal assistance to 4,829 OFWs while 354 OFWs were also given reintegration assistance in the form of small and medium enterprise establishment in partnership with the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), and 384 were granted with educational assistance through CHED, DepEd, and DBM.


#Paul Ang

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