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International labor group continues livelihood programs in Cebu

Mitchelle L. Palaubsanon (The Freeman) - September 18, 2014 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines - The International Labor Organization (ILO), in coordination with the Cebu Provincial government, the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority and the Department of Labor and Employment, continues to provide livelihood and skills training opportunities to among 500,000 displaced marginalized workers who were affected by super typhoon Yolanda in northern Cebu.

ILO-Cebu project coordinator Ivan Qarlson Ledesma said that 2.6 million vulnerable workers (under the poverty line) were affected by super typhoon Yolanda in the region.

Of the 2.6 million vulnerable workers, around 500,000 were from northern Cebu.

“Disasters like earthquake and typhoons cannot be avoided. Most people living in these affected areas are either into farming or fishing. This time, we are helping them change their mindset to look for an alternative source of livelihood other than the traditional ones,” Ledesma said, during the Kapihan sa PIA yesterday.

With the assistance of  TESDA, ILO hopes to train 1,175 scholars for various courses such as in construction, electrical, masonry, welding, housekeeping and food and beverages.

Allan Monreal, president of  “Damgo sa Kaugmaon”, said that for the past several months, they have coordinated with 25 people’s organization which is composed of 2,313 families in Bantayan Island.

Monreal said that they are also helping the residents in their entrepreneurial skills wherein instead of merely relying on their produce, they themselves will be the ones selling it.

“We want to create entrepreneurs among themselves not just as producers of these goods,” Monreal added.

ILO-Cebu project coordinator Ledesma said that currently, there are still affected workers who are into temporary employment but their organization would want to help in changing this.

“We want them to have a change of mindset, for them to have a long term livelihood like entrepreneurship,” Ledesma further said.

To recall, when the country was hit by Yolanda, ILO immediately worked with the Philippine government and humanitarian groups to provide emergency employment to typhoon-affected workers.

ILO said that by early 2015, 6,740 poor and vulnerable workers and their families will have an increased income with more livelihood opportunities and employability (through increased skills) and will be contributing to the re-establishment of sustainable livelihood in their chosen project sites.  —  (FREEMAN)

ALLAN MONREAL BANTAYAN ISLAND CEBU CEBU PROVINCIAL INTERNATIONAL LABOR ORGANIZATION IVAN QARLSON LEDESMA LEDESMA MONREAL TECHNICAL EDUCATION AND SKILLS DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY AND THE DEPARTMENT OF LABOR AND EMPLOYMENT YOLANDA
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