Thursday, June 02, 2005

Only for the distressed and stranded, Free lodging for returning overseas workers

Alexis Douglas B. Romero
OFW Journalism Consortium, Inc.
Friday, 27 May, 2005

For overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) from the city, the airport leads to home. But for those who come from the provinces, the airport and the city are like inhospitable foreign countries.

Partly to solve the lack of lodging for temporarily stranded and distressed OFWs, the Overseas Workers?Welfare Administration (OWWA) inaugurated alfway Home?last April 18 at the OWWA Building in F.B Harrison Street, Pasay City.

Located at the second floor, the facility can accommodate up to 40 OFWs who have nowhere to go in Manila and cannot pay for a hotel room. OWWA will provide them with rooms, meals, beddings, and personal hygiene kits for free.

OWWA Administrator Marianito Roque said a reintegration program, which includes assistance from social workers, will also take place in the facility. OWWA members can benefit from the program that includes livelihood loans and family welfare and social services, according to the OWWA website.

OFW transients will be housed following a schedule from the overseas offices. The home office will be notified of incoming workers needing assistance at the airport.

At least three days in advance, we will know our load and our capacity Roque said.In addition, ouse parents from OWWA Repatriation Division will supervise the transients activities and will facilitate the delivery of services like transport and medical needs

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