Church eyeing to give cash aid to OFWs displaced by pandemic

Church eyeing to give cash aid to OFWs displaced by pandemic

A screenshot of Fr. Restituto Ogsimer, executive secretary of the bishops’ Commission for the Pastoral Care of Migrants and Itinerant People, during an online media forum in Manila May 27.

By CBCP News

May 28, 2020

Manila, Philippines

The Catholic Church’s migrants ministry is targeting to give financial assistance to some overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) who lost their jobs as a result of the coronavirus shutdown.

Fr. Restituto Ogsimer of the bishops’ Commission on Migrants and Itinerant People, said the program is for land-based and sea-based OFWs who did not receive cash aid from the government.

Initially, according to him, about a thousand OFWs will receive the financial assistance by June.

He said that land-based OFWs will receive at least ₱5,000, while sea-based OFWs will receive a cash voucher worth ₱4,000.

“So this is just for distressed and displaced OFWs who did not receive financial aid from any government agencies,” Ogsimer said in a virtual media forum on Wednesday.

The short term project, he said, is a collaborative work of several dioceses, religious orders and the Vatican’s migrants and refugees section.

Ogsimer also said that they are also eyeing to provide microfinance aid to OFWs as part of their long-term programs.

He added that the church is also looking at providing community-based support system for returning OFWs and their families.

“We are looking at church communities adopting an OFW family to assure them that there is a support community that will accompany them in these times of crisis,” he said.