BATASAN COMPLEX, Quezon City (DWDD) – Heeding the call of President Rodrigo R. Duterte, the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) commits to provide services and emergency assistance to Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) from Kuwait, prioritizing women and children.
The DSWD has started providing airport assistance to OFW mothers with children to help them and ensure that their children are cared for while they process their papers.
Similar to the assistance provided to the amnesty availees from Saudi Arabia, the Department is also working at providing cash assistance amounting to P5,000 to mothers and fathers with children. The said amount, although minimal, can be used by the parents to buy milk, diapers, and food for their children.
The Department, however, emphasized that the DSWD provides only P5,000 per family and not per child. DSWD may also give referrals to appropriate agencies if they need further assistance.
Help for Joan’s family
Meanwhile, DSWD Field Office VI Director Rebecca P. Geamala, together with other staff, recently visited the wake of Joanna Daniela Demafelis, the OFW murdered in Kuwait, in Barangay Ferraris, Sara, Iloilo to provide assistance to her family.
Joanna’s parents are both senior citizens and are beneficiaries of the DSWD’s Social Pension Program. They work as farm laborers and currently taking care of Joanna’s nephew Ralph John Demafelis, who receives cash grants under the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program.
Accordingly, Joanna worked as a household helper in Kuwait starting in 2014 to help her parents and to uplift her family’s living condition, and also to send her youngest sister, Joyce, to college.
The DSWD has provided burial assistance funds to Joan’s family; the agency has also assured the family that it will also extend educational assistance and other services to Joyce. Joan’s family will also be given counseling to help them cope with their loss.
DSWD Officer-in-Charge Emmanuel A. Leyco expressed his deepest sympathies to Joanna’s family.
“We grieve every time we hear reports of this nature: Joana was like so many other Filipinos who only wanted to help improve the lives of their loved ones and families so they took the risk of working abroad. It is tragic that so many of our kababayans end up killed or murdered in cold blood overseas. It is clear that it is the deep-seated and widespread poverty that goads Filipinos to work abroad, even as it means leaving their families and young children behind and taking the risk of ending up with cruel and inhuman employers. Much needs to be done to improve the labor and employment situation in the Philippines so Filipino will no longer rush to go abroad for work,” he said. DSWD SMS / MCAG