OFW’s widow gets lifeline as Tindahan ni Bossing recipient

ANNALYN Fernan (center) flanked by DMW Officer-in-Charge Undersecretary Hans Leo J. Cacdac and PLDT Global president and CEO Albert V. Villa-Real during the awarding of her Tinbo business. | PHOTOGRAPH COURTESY OF PLDT GLOBAL

With the passing last year of her migrant worker husband, 37-year-old Annalyn Fernan became a widow with no regular means to support her two children. To make ends meet, she sold rice cakes and processed meat products around their neighborhood in Silang, Cavite.

Enter PLDT Global Corporation and the Department of Migrant Workers (DMW). Fernan was chosen as a beneficiary of PLDT Global’s Overseas Filipino Worker Family Livelihood Program.

Under the program, the widow will be able to train to own and manage a physical version of Tindahan ni Bossing and become an authorized dealer of products and services from PLDT, Smart, and other companies under the MVP Group.

Fernan also received a “Smart Ka-Partner” retailer package, including a smartphone, marketing and signage materials to help boost sales in her new venture.

A grateful Fernan said, “This livelihood package comes as a very welcome surprise and will be a big help to our family. This is my first time (to have a store) so I expect to experience some difficulty while I learn how to operate this, but with the training that I have been promised, I will persevere and learn quickly so I can start providing for my family.”

Support network

The Tinbo store is one of PLDT Global’s support to the reintegration initiatives of the DMW.

“We hope that through the unified efforts of DMW and PLDT Global together with our local and international partners, we can foster a reliable support network that can assist OFWs to realize their fullest potential and achieve success, may it be in the Philippines or abroad,” said Albert V. Villa-Real, president and CEO of PLDT Global.

“What I like most about this project, we innovate, we enervate, and we also directly connect to the hearts and minds of our dear OFWs,” DMW Officer-in-Charge Undersecretary Hans Leo J. Cacdac said.

“The wife and the two minor children of our deceased OFW will stand to benefit from the livelihood opportunity that will be given to them.”

Cacdac added, “I told Annalyn, that what’s different about this livelihood program from PLDT Global is she was introduced to an expert who can handhold her through the business.”

The combined expertise of PLDT Global and the MVP group of companies are supporting her.

Digital literacy

PLDT Global continues to bridge the digital gap by bringing digital services to Filipinos around the world through products and services, particularly through Tinbo — the one-stop marketplace that enables Filipinos living overseas to buy load, pay bills, send food vouchers, e-gifts, healthcare personal identification numbers from mWell, and even gaming PINs for their families in the Philippines. Through Tinbo, OFWs can also acquire a Smart virtual number, enabling them to receive important one-time passwords from their e-wallets and e-banks in the Philippines like Maya. Tinbo also provides OFWs access to a convenient and secured online bills payment platform for their Philippine utilities, and other digital services while outside the Philippines.

Aside from the livelihood program, PLDT Global also hold digital literacy programs for OFWs. Just last year, with the help of the PLDT-Smart Foundation and other partners in the organization, PLDT Global provided upskilling grants, gadgets and training for cacao farming to reintegrated OFWs.

They also gave LearnSmart kits to the children of an OFW who is recovering from an illness in Qatar.

A LearnSmart kit is a learning connectivity companion that contains a Smart LTE Pocket Wifi and flash drive preloaded with learning content for students. LearnSmart is an integral part of the telco’s broader commitment to help the country achieve the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 4 of inclusive quality education. 

PLDT Global’s partnership with the DMW to help ensure the well-being of OFWs and their families is a fundamental part of the much broader PLDT commitment to serve and lift the quality of life of Filipinos everywhere.