Monday, June 30, 2008

Love in the time of migration

This article, "Love in the time of migration," by Randy David was originally published in his column, PUBLIC LIVES, in the Philippine Daily Inquirer on June 14, 2008 (Manila time). He has given Barangay OFW his kind permission to re-publish this article. You may reach him at

MANILA, Philippines—One of my students, Arnold P. Alamon, has written a graduate thesis titled, “Lives on Hold: Sons of Migrant Parents.” It is based on the retrospective accounts of the six young men he interviewed on what it was like to create their own lives while their parents worked abroad.
Poignant and rich in detail, their stories are evocative snap shots of the Filipino family in transition in the era of overseas migration. They show the scars beneath the imported clothes. They articulate the gap that could not be bridged by international calls and text messages.
These are stories that no longer shock us. The improbable has become typical. They are the stuff of recent Filipino films, and they are often romanticized in songs. My particular interest in this study is the shift in the semantics of love in the family that it documents.
The substance of the parental role in the traditional family is equated with being a “good provider.” Apart from the basic necessities of food, shelter, and clothing, the assurance of a solid education up to college is generally treated as a Filipino parent’s primary obligation to his/her children.
In turn, children are expected to obey their parents’ wishes, to look after their younger siblings, to do well in school, and to take care of their parents in old age. Husband and wife are supposed to be supportive of one another in the performance of their culturally-prescribed roles as provider and home maker, respectively.

Modernity has long disturbed this traditional order, but none perhaps has turned it more upside down than the phenomenon of overseas work. It is now common for fathers to leave their children for extended and indefinite periods in order to provide for their needs. Where the man in the family cannot find a job that provides adequate income, the wife must step into the role of provider and look for work.
Today, in the typical Filipino family, the old roles have melted, and both husband and wife have to earn a living to support the growing needs of their children. But the impact of these changes on the family as a world of meanings is not as jarring as when both parents have to leave their young children behind in order to try their luck abroad.

That is when the tacit understandings that bound the Filipino family together come into question. Children, confronting the paradox of the absentee-provider, begin to miss the living presence of the parent who dutifully remits the money and the “balikbayan” boxes containing goods.
Entire studies can be conducted on the countless ways in which parents, spouses, and children desperately attempt to compensate for the physical distance that overseas work has put between them. Telecom companies have tapped into this human need in order to expand their sales of pre-paid calls and other real-time communication schemes aimed at bridging the distance.
But it takes much more to sustain the spirit of family life under these circumstances.
The young men in this study appear to have survived their parents’ absence quite well, a fact that is often celebrated as Filipino resilience. Almost all of them managed to finish college, and they all believe that living on their own somehow forced them to be strong. But an unmistakable sense of loss, often surfacing as resentment, is palpable in their accounts. One of them says, almost as if he were grieving: “My parents did not see me grow up.”
They grope for words to describe the passing of an era in which part of their lives have been sacrificed. It would however be wrong to think that only the children have suffered. I will surmise that the loss is probably at least double on the parents’ side. I say that as a parent. From the moment they were born, I have looked at my children with a wish that I could see them grow into fine human beings every step of the way.
I have perhaps exulted in their triumphs, and bled in their pain, more profusely than in my own. I think of them when I visit a nice place, or eat an unusually fine meal. I worry for their safety, and I cannot imagine not being able to recognize them in their mature years. This is what love commands us to do.

The traditional Filipino family, like the one in which I grew up, was not always good at verbalizing familial love. But it was there. I saw it in my mother’s eyes when anyone of us was unwell and in my father’s eager face whenever he would ask his children to recount their achievements in school or at work.
A word of praise said in my presence came as rarely as an open profession of love. I rejoiced when my parents gave me money or bought me a gift on my birthday, because I did not expect it. Yet I never doubted that in my parents’ scheme of things, I was someone special.

In the age of absentee parenting, the communication of love has taken the form of a steady stream of gift-giving. This however cannot compensate for the erosion of intimacy. As the sociologist Luhmann nicely put it: “Roughly speaking, one loves not because one wants gifts, but because one wants their meaning.”

We expect those we love to show us, by their actions, the depth and complexity of their inner world, not the broad practicalities of their material situation. This is true not only for lovers and spouses in long distance relationships; it applies as well to children and parents torn apart by migration.

It has been very easy to measure the economic benefits from overseas work. But I doubt if one can ever quantify what the Filipino family has given up in terms of love, or what it is doing to recover it.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

110th Philippine Independence Day in Scotland

by Rosa Alicia
United Kingdom

The Filipino Community of North East Scotland celebrated the 110th Philippine Independence Day on the 14th of June 2008 at the Station Hotel, Aberdeen. It was my first Filipino Community formal party here in Aberdeen and I was delighted that visitors and guests of different nationalities, in addition to the Scottish people, were there to celebrate with us.

The party included dinner, a short play on when and how Philippine Independence was proclaimed, a fashion show featuring some of our traditional dresses, Philippine folk dances, and instructions on Scottish dance called Ceilidh.

The dinner was especially good and provided a choice between British dishes and the more common Filipino dishes like kare-kare, lumpia, and leche flan. The folk dances included the Pandango sa Ilaw and Tinikling among a few. One part which I especially liked was when guests were invited to try the Tinikling. It was fun to watch how people of different nationalities tried to take nimble steps between the two bamboo poles.

A special Scottish band was invited to play a type of traditional Scottish dance called Ceilidh Dance. Patiently, the band taught us the dance steps, step by step! Every Ceilidh Dance was really lively, fun, and surely took me to the limits of my lungs!

Mrs. Yoly Wilson, the head of the Filipino Community of North East Scotland, did a really good job at coordinating a simple yet elegant celebration for us and the Scottish community. The event was a fusion of our well-loved Filipino culture and the Scottish culture which is close to our hearts here in Aberdeen.

It was definitely a night of happy mingling!

Copyright © 2008 to Barangay OFW.  All rights reserved.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Update on Dying Caregiver in Canada

Juana Tejada's work permit has been extended by the Canadian government from August 8 to December 10 to allow officials more time to properly assess her case. Her visiting husband has also been granted an open work permit so he can find employment to support her. Please check out the full story in the online version of Toronto Star.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Typhoon in Iloilo!

Finally, I have reached Ms. Bing, the original writer of the email on the devastation wrought by Typhoon Frank in Iloilo on June 21. She has given Barangay OFW her permission to publish her email forwarded to me by Sister Fidelisa Portillo, SPC.

Sister Fidelisa is a Paulinian nun whom I have known since the 1990s when she was the Directress of Claret College in Basilan, an island province near Zamboanga. The email account below is in mixed English, Tagalog, and Ilongo.

from Sister Fidelisa Portillo <>
date Jun 25, 2008 7:43 AM
subject Typhoon in Iloilo!

Dear Carmel,

I would like to share with other OFW's the writer's first-hand experience.

In Christ,

Sister Fidelisa

Hi, guys,

The sun is shining now though it's still cloudy. Only a few reported to the office. Some of them were able to take alternative routes to reach the city. They will have to leave early this afternoon though. The rest who have not shown up are typhoon victims, around 15 of them. That's in our department lang.

Some of them don't know what to do, their clothes are gone, even their uniforms. Their houses are in shambles... furniture, fixtures, appliances damaged or swept away. Some don't even have their cellphones with them. Their vehicles are either totally submerged or can't be found. It must be in fields, or ditches or heaven knows where.

After lunch, I got a call from our group head for Visayas. She wanted me to use the facilities of the province to reach our Kalibo and Boracay branches. It seems that our Kalibo branch's computers were all destroyed. She's quite desperate, but she can't reach anybody there. I had to remind her that cellphones are powered by electricity, and with no power for the last 3 days, the phones won't work.

I told her the water came in so fast, in seconds.. minutes... there was no time to prepare. And on Saturday (June 21) , everybody was already under water. Ferdy, of our Jaro branch, was called to take care of the Jaro branch because it was leaking. When he got back to his house only the rooftop can be seen. It was a good thing a neighbor was able to pull his mom to the roof.

I was indirectlly telling her nga unahon pa ina ang bangko when they also have to attend to their families.

Our group head told me to check the alternate routes to Kalibo. I told her hundreds of vehicles are stranded. I told her I was already in touch with the national defense, two radio stations, and the provincial capitol and they're all saying the same thing. Don't attempt to go because the roads are still not passable.

Si Manny tinak-an siguro, ato naglakat gid..nag-alsahanay boses na sila nga duha. I told our staff that before we take care of others, we have to take care of our own. So this morning, we sent out our vehicle and 4 staffers to try to reach ang mga upod namon diri with dry t-shirts, water, and food.

Merly, our secretary, called me last Saturday. She was perched on her bed (her house is elevated), looking out of the window with water creeping up until it reached her chest. She was asking for help from the governor to rescue her and her neighbors. I didn't have the governor's number but i had that of his son, Jun-Jun, the congressman. I also tried to reach their mayor and his staff, and also the landbankers in Pavia. I couldn't get through so i called the radio stations.

Wilma, another staff member, had been calling for help since 10 a.m. Their house has a second floor though. Wec tried to go out of his house to help Wilma and her family. But he said what happened to him was just like something he watched in the movies. He had to outrun a wall of water higher than his vehicle.

Gali, Providence Subdivision had to tear down its wall because water kept on rising and the houses inside the subdivision were getting submerged.

Ric was on top of his roof with his family. The Janiuay Hospital in front of his house was submerged in water. The hospital staff were able to pull out the patients, one of whom died because she got disengaged from the oxygen tank. All the hospital equipment were damaged.

Our two Bongs' houses were also inundated with water. They only had time to save themselves and their family. Keith of our Plaza Libertad branch got down from the rooftop just early this morning. She thought her grandparents were goners. They were not able to climb to the rooftop. She found them inside the house, cold and hungry but alive. Their wooden beds floated around the house during the flood.

Erp's vehicle was crushed by a mango tree. Another officemate had to destroy his roof in order for his family to climb up.

Always, when daw maguba na ang kalibutan sang warning nila sang bagyo, wala man bagyo. This time, Capiz was signal no. 1 only. Iloilo, no signal at all 'coz the typhoon was supposed to graze only parts of Samar.

I was up till 1 a.m. on Friday night (June 20) and it was not even raining. When i went to bed, it had started to rain, but then I was dead to the world after that. When I woke up, it was raining and there were gusty winds. I thought of my seedlings of oregano and thyme and I thought I'd shelter them.

I was horrified when i looked out of the window and saw that the water on the ground was already high. I asked if it rained hard the night before. George remarked, daw maguba na kalibutan, wala ka imo kahibalo.

But as far as storms go, this is nothing. The wind was not that strong. Iloilo has experienced typhoons far, far worse than this. Which is why it was an utter shock for me when I turned on the radio at 1 pm nga grabe na gali ang situation in the city and Pavia. By 3-4 pm, a lot of calls were coming in asking to be rescued. We were caught flat-footed and we were really not prepared for this. It was each to his own.

Even the radio reporters felt bad. There really was no way to get to those who needed to be rescued. Just listening made you also feel bad. Each town knew they're on their own. Roads were under water, bridges had collapsed. The city was able to borrow 10 jet skis, some rubber boats and two pump boats. 7 pm pa lang, naguba na ang pump boats.

The family of Mayor TreƱas was rescued out of their house at past 10:30 pm. Big boys are not supposed to cry, but several mayors were crying, their voices breaking! Out of helplessness at the overwhelming cries for help nga wala man sila mahimo.

Vivian called the Disaster Coordinating Center to help her sister in Alta Tierra but she was told that there's nothing more they can do at the moment.

The sugar central in San Enrique had 10 feet high of water, tunaw ang sugar. The NFA warehouse, flooded ang sacks of rice nga bag-o lang na deliver. For the first time ever, would you believe, the road from SM City up to the Marina had waist-high water?

A lot of people, among them, one of George's med reps spent the night at SM City. It became an evacuation site of sorts sang mga surrounding baranggays.

SM opened their food court area and the canopy and stairs to accommodate people. And they had to close the malls yesterday and today.

School will resume on Wednesday. Now, there's cleaning up. Nagakaubos pala diri. The mud can't be rid of by just hosing it down. Sobra 1 foot ang thickness sang mud.

Worse, some areas will take 4 to 5 days for power to be back. Ang area Jaro up wala pa water coz the water pipes from Maasin are broken. Wala ni rich or poor subong sa areas affected. All of them are buried in muck. Delia, my sis -in law, had water reaching her 2nd level. All appliances went under water.

Carla, another officemate, thought, anaw na. The cameras of GMA-7 are still in her house. The GMA-7 people were caught by the flood and their service vehicle parked outside her house was soon under water. She and her children were eating in their garage when a neighbor passed by. Nagpacomplacer siya mag-imbitar, ay nagka-on gid with her family. It turned out her neighbor had not eaten since the day before.

When you go around, you will see vehicles in the fields, sa mga canal sa higad dalan, may gasang-at sa kahoy, dead livestock (cows, pigs, etc) and mud everywhere...

But Iloilo will bounce back.

Copyright © 2008 to Barangay OFW. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Dying Filipino caregiver in Canada is being kicked out

This article by Ms. Ma. Ceres P. Doyo was originally published in her column, HUMAN FACE, in the Philippine Daily Inquirer on June 19, 2008 (Manila time). Ms. Doyo has given Barangay OFW her kind permission to re-publish this article. You may reach her at

Please hang in there, Mrs. Juana Tejada. We are praying for you and everyone concerned.

In my column last week on “Caregiver” the movie, I ended by saying the movie should have a sequel. Well, it’s that column piece that is having a sequel. And this is for Filipino caregiver Juana Tejada. Juana de la Cruz, the EveryOFW.

I now step aside to project the myriad voices raised on her behalf. First, let me quote portions of a stinging column piece (“Our nanny state, save for nannies,” June 11) written by Joe Fiorito for Canada’s The Star.

"Corey Glass may get to stay. He is the American deserter—call him a war resister; better still, call him a conscientious objector—who came to our country to avoid the war in Iraq."

"All parties in the House of Commons approved a motion last week urging the government to allow him and others like him to remain in Canada as permanent residents. The vote was 137-110 in favor. If the motion is not binding, it has moral force."

"He came here to save his life."

"At the same time we are kicking Juana Tejada out of Toronto and we are sending her home to die."

"Juana is from the Philippines. She came to earn a living looking after other people’s kids. She did not sneak across the border. She came to be a citizen. She followed all the rules."

"And then she got cancer."

"She must go. He might stay. There was no motion in Parliament for her. Why the hell not? Is it race? Is it class? Is it gender?"

"There are perhaps 100 war resisters living in Canada at the moment. Their numbers are too small to be of import, but their presence illustrates a principle: we keep an open door. Remember Vietnam? ..."

"We ought never to forget that nannies enrich our lives with their hard work. They raise our kids. They enable our lives of privilege. They are the working women who carry other women on their backs…"

"We offered Juana a path to citizenship if she would wipe the snotty noses of our brats. But some dim bureaucrat—in Alberta of all places, where they have the least understanding of what life is like here, and now—has decided that Juana’s illness ‘might reasonably be expected to cause excessive demand on health and social services.’…"

"She came here in 2003. She came to work. Never mind her dues, she paid her taxes. It is as simple as that. Here is another principle: we are Canadian; we do what’s reasonable."

"Juana would have earned permanent resident status when her three years were up. She did not choose to get cancer in 2006. We are giving her no choice. We are sending her home to die…"

You can read Fiorito’s entire piece by logging on to The petition letter addressed to Prime Minister Stephen Harper is there for anyone to sign. I was the 801st signer. There is space for your own personal message.

I personally know one of the persons behind the petition. My US-based schoolmate Mila Alvarez-Magno and her husband Oswald are trying to gather as many signatures as could be gathered before Aug. 8, the day Juana is to be sent home. Here are excerpts from the letter:

Dear Prime Minister Harper:

We, the undersigned, respectfully file this petition on behalf of cancer-stricken Juana Tejada, a Filipina caregiver, who has been ordered to leave the country by August 8 and whose application for permanent residency has been refused on the ground that her illness might pose excessive burden on the health care system.

We regard the deportation order against Tejada as no less than a death sentence, and a cruel and inhumane decision. It tarnishes Canada’s excellent international reputation as a humane and compassionate nation…

Like the thousands who hope for a better life in Canada … Tejada answered Canada’s call for caregivers and has served in Canada since 2003, separated from her husband and six siblings. She worked hard in a low-paying job that demanded more than the usual number of working hours that other working Canadians enjoy, to earn her right to become a permanent resident.

But for her medical condition, she would have been assured of permanent residency, able to sponsor her family, after the required three years of service as a caregiver under Canada’s Live-In Caregiver Program. Her cancer is a disease she did not choose to have. She might even have contracted the disease in this country. During all the three years when she was able, Tejada, in her small way, had supported the health-care system that she now desperately needs to care for her.

She is no burden to the health care system. She is being looked after by generous and compassionate doctors who are providing their services for free. She is buying her medications with the financial support of friends, neighbors, and members of her community.

Even granting that there is a cost to the system, surely, it cannot be said that in order to save a few thousand dollars in health care costs in this isolated case, Canada is prepared to suffer the ignominy of sending Tejada back to her homeland, the Philippines, a country with no socialized health care system, to die.

Caregivers like Tejada provide valuable home care services to thousands of Canadian families. They enable Canadians who use their services to lead productive lives, and to maximize their contributions to society. Unlike the thousands of refugees Canada is known to accept and protect from potential harm or death, Tejada has served this country and paid her taxes dutifully. She has more reasons to seek humanitarian protection and care from Canada than most refugees…

Canada’s greatness as a country rests, not on the stone-cold and literal application of its laws, but on the humane application of such laws and the wisdom of its national leaders in doing what is morally right….

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Writing Comments; Contact Details

Dear readers,

We value your response. We’d like to know what you feel and think. We’d like to hear your story. And with your permission, we’d like the whole world to know that you are the greatest everyday hero/heroine.

Mahalaga po ang bawat isa sa atin. You may be a former, present, or future OFW. You may be a friend or a family member of an OFW. You may be a student or researcher. You may be a concerned individual.

1. To write comments in response to an article or post, please scroll down to the very end of that article. Click on the comments link. You’ll be taken to a comments page where you can type your response whether it’s a thought, a feeling, an opinion, a suggestion, or a question. When you’re done, click on the “publish your comment” button.

2. To contact Barangay OFW, please e-mail Dr. Carmelita C. Ballesteros at

Marami pong salamat,

Barangay OFW

Monday, June 23, 2008

110th Philippine Independence Day in Nigeria

by Maynard Flores -PBSN Press Secretary

In our country, it is the time to bring out the flags, emblems and insignias to commemorate our peoples’ struggle for nationhood.

Some of us have grown cynical about the relevance of the occasion, considering the present situation and direction of the country.

But for most of us, it doesn’t matter what was the outcome, long after the cries and shouts for independence had died down.

The idea of being an independent nation is one that gives us pride as citizens, no matter what. It is the moment. It is the feeling. It is the sense of having overcome a three and a quarter century of foreign domination that thrills us into celebrating Independence Day, regardless of our social circumstances.

We celebrate Independence Day not only because it is our duty as citizens of the Republic, but because it imbues us with our national identity – it is what makes us Pinoys and Pinays.

And we carry this sense of pride wherever we go, especially when we are overseas.

And so here in Nigeria, we join the entire Filipino nation and Filipinos around the world in celebrating the 110th anniversary of our nation’s declaration of independence from foreign subjugation.

It is always the year’s highlight in our stay in this gracious host nation of Nigeria.

We are the Naija (Nigeria) Pinoys and Pinays

Our presence here is a testament to the global professional excellence of the Filipino workforce. Most of us are here in Nigeria because our professional skills are in demand. And we have come to love working and staying in this country that has provided us well with amenities and friendships.

Some of us have brought our families here. Some of us have had our children born and raised in Nigeria. And still some of us have married Nigerians (or is it the Nigerians who got married to Filipinos/nas?) and are proud of it.

Despite the occasional job hazard to life and limb, working and living in Nigeria is like having a vacation. We are never far from home in most aspects. And we are proud and happy being Naija OFW’s (Overseas Filipino Workers).

New Heroes of the Millennium
It is a nice catchy phrase. But every time we hear it, we can only smirk and chuckle about what it really means to us --- nothing.

Due to the kidnapping of a few oil field workers in Southeast Nigeria, the Philippine government has imposed an employment ban of Filipinos to Nigeria. This has caused a mounting frustration among us OFWs in Nigeria, an irony to our government’s paean to us as ‘new heroes.’

But yes, we are heroes, in the sense that we have braved working in foreign lands, facing various risks, and enduring homesickness, in order to help our family and the national economy through our sacrifices and remittances.

For our families left back home, we are heroes, indeed.

For our government and politicians, we are just 0.01 percent of the remittance, a very small margin of heroes.

But we Filipinos are incorrigible optimists. We continue to hope and pray that the Philippine government will soon lift the OFW deployment ban to Nigeria.

We celebrated our Independence Day in Nigeria, with the usual pride and pomp.
Proud to be Naija OFWs.

Proud to be a Filipino.

Mabuhay !
Copyright © 2008 to Barangay OFW. All rights reserved.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Welcome to Barangay OFW

Tuloy po kayo! Maligayang pagdating!

We are a group of OFWs who believe that all of us overseas Filipino workers must focus on bringing about reforms and reintegration for the benefit of all Filipinos working overseas around the world as well as our families in the Philippines.

This blog site is for all of us past, present, and future OFWs as well as our families. Our group will maintain this blog site for OFW-related information, education, and advocacy.

Please write your comments, questions, and suggestions with regard to posted articles. If you wish to share an OFW experience, yours or that of someone you know, please e-mail either Dr. Carmelita C. Ballesteros at or any of the contributors at their personal e-mail addresses.

Today, there are about 10 million OFWs in every country around the globe. In 2007, the estimate was that we remitted through the banks a total of USD14.3 billion. Thus, we keep the Philippine economy afloat. Hence, we are hailed as “Bagong Bayani.”

But unlike Manny Pacquiao for whom government and mass media fall all over themselves to give a hero’s welcome, we OFWs are treated shabbily at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA), at POEA, at OWWA, at Philhealth, at the Department of Foreign Affairs, at Philippine embassies, at recruitment agencies, etc.

Our Vision

Overseas Filipino Workers are world-class. Thus, we must be genuinely valued, admired, and respected by both the public and private sectors in our own country.

Our Mission

  • To pursue pro-OFW services from the government and private sectors through structural and/or institutional reforms.
  • To help shape a prosperous post-OFW future through a holistic reintegration policy.

Copyright © 2008 to Barangay OFW. All rights reserved.

Barangay OFW’s Beginnings

I applied online for a teaching position at the National Institute of Education, Nanyang Technological University in Singapore. After hurdling the recruitment process, I was offered a contract as a Teaching Fellow. A ticket was sent to me to fly to Singapore on November 30, 2007 and assume duty on December 3, 2007.

Completely unprepared, I was deeply hurt by the shabby treatment I experienced at the NAIA when I left for Singapore on November 30. On the contrary, I was treated with courtesy and respect at the super-efficient and world-class Changi Airport of Singapore.

Very grateful that I made it to Singapore, I was ready to forget the shabby, embarrassing, demeaning, and painful experience I had at NAIA.

But I realized that I am not alone when I read on January 6, 2008 an article about a similar airport episode in the online Inquirer. The writer is former Chief Justice Artemio V. Panganiban and his article is about his daughter’s experience at the NAIA. I don’t know what moved me but I instantly e-mailed the former Chief Justice and poured my heart out.

The next Sunday, January 13, my sister and brother-in-law called from the Philippines early in the morning to tell me that the former Chief Justice had included excerpts from my letter in his column. It turned out that OFWs from every imaginable nook and cranny around the globe shared their tales of woe not only about NAIA but also about the Department of Foreign Affairs, the National Statistics and Census Office, the POEA, the OWWA, etc.

On January 14, the former Chief Justice asked me to help him collate the data on OFW grievances and suggestions for reforms. He said he is committed to help bring about reforms, but he would like to approach the matter from a macro-perspective rather than deal with individual cases on a piece-meal basis.

I hesitated for a moment. Many if’s and but’s swam in my head. But I made a leap of faith and said yes.

On January 20, the former Chief Justice wrote about OFWs for the third time. He appealed to all of us, “So, OFWs unite! Otherwise, your gripes will not be acted on and you will have no relief from your woes.”

From hundreds of e-mail senders, a core group of about twenty to thirty men and women have remained in touch with one another since January 2008.

We used the email address and referred to ourselves as United OFWS until May when we discovered through a Google search that an older organization based in Saudi Arabia had the same name.

After a flurry of e-mails, we decided to give ourselves a new name – Barangay OFW. In due time, we shall register our group with the Securities and Exchange Commission in the Philippines.

Copyright © 2008 to Barangay OFW. All rights reserved.

Why the name Barangay OFW?

Each of us belongs to a barangay in the Philippines. The barangay which we belong to is a very special place. Most often, our extended family members live in the same barangay. We depend on our neighbors who depend on us in return. Interdependent, we help and look out for one another.

We celebrate birthdays, weddings, baptisms, fiestas, and other occasions in our barangay. In times of need, we help one another. We play, work, and worship mostly in our barangay. Thus, we are connected to one another.

It is our hope that all of us OFWs will feel connected to one another through our common experiences as overseas Filipino workers, as residents of our cyber-barangay Barangay OFW.

Copyright © 2008 to Barangay OFW. All rights reserved.

About Us

We are a group of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) intent on bringing about reforms and reintegration for the benefit of Filipinos all over the world.

Our Vision

World-Class Overseas Filipino Workers: Valued, Admired, Respected

Our Mission

  • To pursue pro-OFW services from the government and private sectors through structural and/or institutional reforms.
  • To help shape a prosperous post-OFW future through a holistic reintegration policy.

Strategic Paths

  • Information Dissemination
  • Policy Studies and Advocacy
  • Nonformal Education on Entrepreneurship, Citizenship, and Governance

Core Values

  1. Integrity
  2. Truth
  3. Courage
  4. Financial Intelligence
  5. Compassion
  6. Creativeness
  7. Commitment
  8. Determination

Copyright © 2008 to Barangay OFW. All rights reserved.