Study hard. Take this course. Then work abroad.
These lines are one of the common dialogue we used to hear from many Filipino parents/family. Most of us grew up in a condition or community where working abroad seems to be a solution for many of our problems. Sometimes it’s true. But in most cases, it’s not. Why working abroad is one of the ultimate goals for many Filipino?
In 2014 alone, it is estimated that there are 2.3 million OFWs working abroad. 2.3 million! Whooa! That’s a huge number of Filipino people. That’s why OFW remittances are one of the main factors that “fuels” our economy. It reached 173.2 billion pesos in 2014. See them here.
Thanks to our beloved OFWs. But aside from these numbers, what is the main reason why these Filipinos are working abroad sacrificing time away from their family? What’s their ultimate goal?
My mom used to be an OFW before. I have an OFW brother now, friends, uncle, cousins and many OFW acquaintances and as far as I know, the main reason why they are working abroad is to look for better opportunity. To earn more. To save. To provide more for their family. For their kids. To prepare for a better and brigther future. In short, to have a better life.
Others may have different goals, but for many, this is their ultimate “WHY” why they are working abroad.
It is not easy to work abroad. To be an OFW. Not only for the person abroad but for also for their family here in the Philippines. I can testify that. My mom worked abroad too when I’m in college.
That’s one of the most “rough and shaky road” in our life. There were many challenges, trials and “up and downs“. Good thing we get them through. But if we we’re going to choose again, no way. We will find other ways.
I know same thing happen in many OFW families. In fact, most of them experienced worse. While some achieved their goals, many of them failed too.
Does that really worth it? I mean, all the sacrifices and hardships the OFWs and their families went through just to earn more? Save more or get a better life? Do they achieved a better life anyway?
When you asked a kid with parents working abroad, they will choose not to. But if you’re going to ask their OFW parents, they’ll do and sacrifice everything just to provide better life for their children. Even if it cost them time away from their family. The same thing with other OFWs.
I guess everyone has different answers. And it really boils down to what really matters to an individual. Your goals. Your beliefs. Your characters. And your core values. While it’s worthy for some, it maybe not for others.
If there could only be more opportunities here in the Philippines, maybe we’ll have a different scenario. If there could only be more good paying jobs with more benefits. If there could only be good and reliable transportation, reliable and fast medium of communication, best rules, regulations and processes. If there could only be no corruption in the government. If there could only be no corrupt officials. If there could only be “discipline” to every Filipino. If only. Sigh.
Do you agree with what I think? Please share your thoughts. Cheers!