In my experience of attending and facilitating Financial Literacy Seminar here in Turin and beyond the first question being raised before starting the seminar proper was “What are your expectations in this seminar?” and majority would answer “To learn how to handle or manage money” as the title suggest it and some said to learn how to save. And very rare that the second part which is “Addressing Barriers to Reintegration” is given attention .
As we all know that everyone of us who left the country has a luggage full not just of the things we needed while away from home but also a luggage filled with dreams and goals or aims if one wishes to call it for oneself and for ones family and along with it the duration of how long one has to stay away.
Some said I will go abroad for 1 year, 3 years, 5 years or 10 yrs and so on. But don’t you ever realized that after 20, 30 and even 40 years we realized that most of them have not reintegrated yet including myself. What are those hindrances that keep us remaining away from home and not achieving all the goals we’ve set at the beginning of the journey as OFW?. One of the reasons that hinder us maybe if not a case for all is a growing luxurios lifestyle, of graving for things that are not even necessary in other word consumerism etc. and at the end of the day one realized that a monthly salary is not enough to provide all those things for onseself and for the family left behind as a result one becomes also indebted. And saving for onself and the family becomes impossible and to worst cases one comes home with no saving and no more family waiting for him or her..
At the end of the seminar some participants had this question: “Why is it that you’ve conducted this seminar only now?” If this has been conducted when I was younger maybe I’ve already reintegrated in the Philippines and maybe my family is still complete.
I believe and I am convinced that it isn’t too late to give ourselves another chance to start all over again to set one’s goal and fulfill one’s dreams for giving one’s family a better future and to prepare for returning home.
In most cases the financial literacy seminar that was conducted was intended to instill among migrants the idea of saving, investing and becoming entrepreneurs ended as a drama having it coupled with the topic of Addressing Barrriers to Reintegration made migrants realized that achieving goals would be realized with the cooperation of the families left behind in the Philippines.