Manila, Philippines – OWWA or Overseas Workers Welfare Organization, is the government branch of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) which protects and promotes the welfare of Filipino workers abroad or OFWs (Overseas Filipino Workers). OWWA plays an important role in many OFWs’ lives. OFWs need the support they can get because they experience many emotional and physical trials while they are working away from home.
An OFW may experience emotional pain from missing his family or physical pain when an employer abuses him. This is when OWWA comes in. This agency protects and supports OFWs.
Aside from that, the agency also sponsors programs and services for OFWs around the globe. Some of the owwa benefits that an OFW will get by being a member of OWWA are the loan options, seaman benefits, scholarship program, and more. If you are an OFW, you may register as a member of OWWA to get these benefits.
Here are those OWWA Benefits that every Filipino overseas should know.
OWWA Benefits for Dismemberment and/or Disability
- Active OWWA members can get up to Php100,000 if they get injured on-the-job abroad.
OWWA Death Benefits
- The family of an active OWWA member will get Php100,000 for natural death and Php200,000 for an accident. The beneficiaries will also receive Php20,000 for funeral expenses.
Education Program Before Departure
- PDOS or Pre-departure Orientation Seminar – OFWs are required to take this orientation seminar to prepare them to adapt to their new work surroundings when they work abroad. This is a one-day-only seminar.
- CPDEP or Comprehensive Pre-departure Program – This is a Household Service Workers (HSWs) program. It will take between 4-6 days and conducted by an accredited NGO and OWWA. The accredited NGO will conduct the PDOS while lessons on language, the culture, and stress management will be handled by OWWA.
Seafarer’s Upgrading Program or SUP
- This program provides training for seafarers. The program will improve the skills, knowledge, and expertise of the seafarers. They will learn about new maritime standards here and abroad as well as advancements in technology which relates to the job.
- EDSP or Education for Development Scholarship Program – The qualified dependent of an active OWWA member receives educational assistance to take up either a 4-year or 5-year college degree in a college or university of their choice.
- OFWDSP or OFW Dependent Scholarship Program – This is educational assistance for the qualified beneficiary of the active OWWA member. The qualified dependent can pursue a 4-year or 5-year college degree or an associate degree in a state college or university.
- CMWSP or Congressional Migrant Workers Scholarship Program – This program is given to qualified ‘migrant workers and/or their immediate descendants’ to take a 4-year or 5-year college degree in Science and Technology.
- ELAP or Educational Livelihood Assistance Program – One qualified dependent (eldest) will get educational assistance of the OWWA member who was active before his death.
OFWs and Dependents Training Programs
- SESP or Skills for Employment Scholarship Program – OWWA gives OFWs and their qualified dependents training assistance in vocational and technical courses offered which are recognized by TESDA and the government.
- ITTP or Information Technology Training Program – This is a computer literacy program for OFWs and their beneficiaries. This includes training and access to the internet so they can communicate with each other.
Workers Welfare Assistance Program
- On-site Assistance and Services – OFWs abroad can get assistance and support from OWWA in the country where they are working. OWWA gives counseling services, meditation, and reconciliation between employee and employer.
- In-Country – This is the services of OWWA for their active members. These services include temporary shelter, allowance, and transportation, and more.
OFW-EDLP or Overseas Filipino Workers- Enterprise Development and Loan Program
- This loan facility works hand-in-hand with OWWA’s partner bank Landbank of the Philippines (LBP) and the Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP).
*Being an active member of OWWA will allow you to get these benefits. Just register with the agency and follow their instructions and regulations to become a member. You are entitled all these benefits when you become a member so you can rest easy in knowing that it is not only you who will benefit from OWWA but also your family.