Typhoon victims in Camotes Island found renewed hope after they completed their technical and skills training from the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (Tesda).
Around 827 typhoon victims from the four towns in the island received their Tesda national certificates II last November 6 at the San Francisco town gym.
“Mao jud ni ang among paglaum nga mas dako ang posilibilidad nga makatrabaho mi (We hope that through this training the possibility of us landing a job becomes clearer),” said Michelle Lokbayo, from Barangay Tigues of Poro town.
“Tsansa na ni ilabina sa mga high school graduates ra nga makatrabaho sa gawas (This is an opportunity especially those who are only high school graduates to work abroad),” said Judith Losornas, from Barangay North Poblacion of San Francisco town.
TESDA Director General Secretary Emmanuel Joel Villanueva, who administered the graduation ceremony, encouraged the graduates: “Huwag na huwag kayong bibitiw sa inyong mga mga pangarap (Hold on to your dreams).”
“It is time to move up and move on. Believe in yourself, believe in God…never lose hope and never give up,” said Provincial Board (PB) Member Miguel Antonio Magpale.
Villanueva was with Fifth District Congressman Joseph Ace Durano, and PB Members Miguel Antonio Magpale and Jude Thaddeus Durano in the rite.
The qualifications of the graduates include carpentry, masonry, welding, housekeeping, household services, computer hardware services, and electrical installation maintenance.
This is a special program of Tesda, United Nations Development Program, Department of Labor and Employment, Province of Cebu, and the local government units (LGUs) intended for the Typhoon Yolanda victims.
Instead of spending their own money for the qualifications, the victims earned it for free.
They were also provided with tool kits and other assistance they can use in their employment, something that they cannot get in the usual programs of Tesda.
The graduation coincided with the first year anniversary when the typhoon struck Central Philippines including northern Cebu last year.
Similar activities for the Tesda graduates will be held in Medellin and Bogo City on November 7.
The province contributed Php 2 million worth of assistance as a counterpart to the program, said Board Member Magpale. The fund, which was divided among the 16 LGUs affected by Yolanda, was used to buy training equipment.
Villanueva added that the Tesda certification served as their “passport” to get employment abroad and an added criterion for salary increase.
He said Tesda’s national certificate II is a requirement that overseas employers would ask from Filipino workers.