Retiring OFWs who gained expertise abroad urged to become TESDA trainers

Aleta Nieva Nishimori, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 19 2020 04:03 PM

MANILA - The Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) on Saturday urged overseas Filipino workers who are about to retire or those who plan to stay in the Philippines for good to come on board as trainers on technical-vocational courses.

“'Yung iba pa pong OFW natin na mga expert na, paretiro na o wala nang planong bumalik pa sa ibang bansa, s’yempre they were able to gain expertise abroad, at the same time TESDA graduate naman po sila, hinihikayat namin silang maging trainers para po makapagbigay din tayo ng tulong at livelihood sa ating retiradong OFWs,” said TESDA Deputy Director General Aniceto Bertiz III.

(Other OFWs who are experts and about to retire or have no plans of working overseas were able to gain expertise abroad and at the same time are TESDA graduates, we encourage them to become trainers so that we can also provide livelihood to them.)

Bertiz said additional trainers are needed with the surge in the number of enrollees at the state-run training institution, which now has over 800,000 trainees.

The government said around 174,000 OFWs have been repatriated due to the COVID-19 pandemic and other distress calls.

Of the total repatriates, Bertiz said around 71,000 OFWs have enrolled in TESDA’s skills training programs since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic until September 13.

“Patuloy pa rin natin silang hinihikayat na mag-avail ng ating mga programa,” he said.

(We still continue to urge them to avail of our programs.)

During the Laging Handa virtual briefing on Saturday, Bertiz said TESDA is offering 71 online courses— from electronics to web design— that Filipinos may easily take while at home during the pandemic.

“Mapapakinabangan po ito lalo na 'yung mga work-from-home, gustong magkaroon ng extrang kita at siyempre concentration natin 'yung major priority sectors— agriculture, construction, healthcare pa rin natin 'yung ating tinututukang programa,” he said.

(This is beneficial especially to those working from home and who want to earn extra money. But, of course our concentration is still with the major priority sectors: agriculture, construction and healthcare.)

TESDA ’s online courses complement the government’s Balik Probinsiya Bagong Pag-Asa Program, he said. They also partnered with other private companies to ensure jobs for those who have completed the training.

“The TESDA approach now is TESDA Abot Lahat. It’s an end-to-end approach: kaalaman, kakayahan hanggang kabuhayan. Sa mga OFWs naman po, 'yung mga nate-train natin they can access our partner agencies tulad ng DOLE, OWWA, DTI,” he said.

(The TESDA approach is end-to-end: knowledge, skills, up to livelihood. For OFWs we have trained, they can access our partner agencies.)

TESDA is also appealing to Congress and the Senate to increase their budget to be able to help more Filipinos displaced by the pandemic, particularly OFWs, in order to prepare them while waiting for the country where they used to work to open and accept foreign workers again.

“Mayroon din tayong pakikipag-ugnayan sa ibang bansa na nagpe-prepare na rin po tulad ng skilled workers sa Japan, Germany, Canada, Hong Kong and Taiwan. We are matching our own skills training doon sa mga demand po nila

(We are also in coordination with other countries, preparing skilled workers for Japan, Germany, Canada, Hong Kong, and Taiwan.)

TESDA's online courses can be accessed through its website or through their regional offices.