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OFWs must now undergo financial literacy seminar

Overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) must now undergo financial literacy training as required orientation seminar before leaving the Philippines.

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) has teamed up with the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) and the BDO Foundation for the Pinanysal na Talino at Kaalaman (PiTaKa) program.

Officially launched on Monday, PiTaKa financial literacy sessions will be incorporated in both Pre-Departure Orientation Seminar (PDOS) and Post-Arrival Orientation Seminar (PAOS) of overseas Filipino workers.

Three videos embedded with financial literacy lessons and messages is the main tool for the sessions, which will also be used for general orientation seminars of OFW families.

Session guides and training kits will be provided for OWWA trainers and OWWA-accredited PDOS/PAOS providers.

According to BDO Foundation, the learning tools are designed to match the OFW psyche, with the objective of eventually changing financial behaviors, and transitioning them from being spenders to regular savers, investors, or business owners.

“As remittances consistently account for 10 percent of the Philippines’ gross domestic product, OFWs are indeed modern-day heroes. Yet, we continue to hear stories of OFWs facing financial struggles,” BSP Governor Nestor Espenilla Jr. said in a statement.

“The PiTaKa program aims to change these sad stories into ones with happy endings—OFWs and their families living together in the Philippines, with the capability to sustain their financial health, and productively contribute to the national economy,” he added.

Personal remittances, or the sum of transfers in cash or in kind, rose by 3 percent to mark a record high of $32.213 billion for the whole of 2018.

“The PiTaKa campaign will complement the existing and current financial literacy initiatives, both of the government and private sector, by reinforcing a more ‘reachable’, ‘likable’, and ‘shareable’ campaign,” said OWWA Administrator Hans Leo Cacdac.

A similar program was launched in May 2018, which aims to teach financial literacy in public schools across the country. —VDS, GMA News