Subsidies to OFW Children in Poor Areas Led to High School Diplomas
Jeremaiah M. Opiniano Of OFW Journalism Consortium, Apr 9, 2012
MANILA–Residing in a poor province and being part of a family whose parent works abroad, you might think a high school child under such conditions won’t finish high school.
But 74 children of overseas workers did even if they are found in the poor provinces of Masbate, Agusan del Sur and Maguindanao.
These 74 migrant children are part of a total of 748 children who were provided educational subsidies thanks to a bilateral program being implemented by international organizations and bankrolled by the government of Spain.
The subsidies were part of a joint program on youth, employment and migration (YEM) that the Philippine offices of the International Organization for Migration, the International Labor Office, the United Nations Population Fund and the United Nations Children’s Fund are implementing.
The two years subsidies were provided to 641 students at risk of dropping out, 33 former out-of-school youth, and 74 students classified as disadvantaged children of OFWs in public schools in Masbate, Antique, Agusan del Sur and Maguindanao. These students come from 15 public high schools.
Such subsidies, said IOM Philippines programme officer Ricardo Casco, are a response to these children’s financial limitations for them to finish schooling, such as transportation expenses, costs for school assignments, and meals during school days.
The YEM project provided a monthly allowance of PHP 1,000 (USD 23.21) for transport, food and other expenses, and PHP 500 (USD 11.60) for school-related fees. Apart from helping improve secondary school participation by disadvantaged young people, the project has somehow helped these fresh graduates become better prepared to enter into college and, eventually, become employed after earning college education.
IOM collaborated with the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration in providing these subsidies.
IOM Philippines chief of mission Ovais Sarmad also encouraged new partners, such as the local government units in the four provinces and private donors, to carry on subsidizing these students’ college or vocational-technical education, as well as having a fund to provide subsidies to other disadvantaged youth.
Taken from: OFW Journalism Consortium