Some 447 Overseas Filipino Workers have already returned home despite the COVID-19 pandemic with the assistance of the OFW Help Desk initiated by the Public Employment Service Office (PESO), which is under the Office of Mayor Felipe Antonio Remollo, in coordination with the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration and Provincial Inter-Agency Task Force on the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases.
City PESO Manager Maria Socorro Mira said that the Help Desk assisted stranded OFWs and those who were repatriated to access information and guidelines on the financial assistance given to them by OWWA.
The OFW Help Desk offers the following programs and services:
1. Social Benefits: Disability and dismemberment benefit, death and burial benefits, supplemental medical assistance for OFWs (MEDplus), and Welfare Assistance Program (WAP).
2. Education and Training Assistance: Pre-Departure Education Program, Training Programs for Filipino Seafarers, Scholarships for Dependents, Short-Term Training Programs for OFWs and Dependents.
3. Social Services and Family Welfare Services: Repatriation Assistance Program, Reintegration Program, and Overseas Filipino Workers Enterprise Development and Loan Program(OFW-EDLP)
4. Workers Welfare Assistance Program: On-site Assistance and services extended to OFWs at the jobsites and In-country Assistance extended to OFWs/ families at the home front.
The PESO OFW Help Desk was created through a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) signed between the regional OWWA office and the City Government of Dumaguete to facilitate welfare cases, access to OEC (Overseas Employment Certificates), and repatriation of abused and deceased OFWs.