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CG tells CARD graduates to share their learning and be ‘positive influencers’

07 October 2020

By Daisy CL Mandap 

Congen Tejada told graduates, spread the word about CARD's important lessons 

Consul General Raly Tejada has exhorted overseas Filipino workers who graduated from the first virtual training given by CARD Hong Kong Foundation to keep up their good work and spread the word about what they had learned.

In his keynote speech at the landmark event, ConGen Tejada said: “Continue doing good works and be positive influencers in the community.”

The online ceremony held on Sept 27 honored 25 OFWs who completed CARD HK’s first online financial literacy program, and 19 in entrepreneurship training.

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The basic fin-lit lessons took five Sunday sessions, and the entrepreneurship which included business planning and presentation, took three sessions. Seven trained OFW trainors led by Victoria Munar, plus the foundation’s co-founder Edna Aquino, chair Alex Aquino, and CARD Philippines’ Jireh Duhina took turns doing the online lectures.

ConGen paid tribute to CARD HK for not letting the coronavirus contagion stop it from remaining true to its advocacy of providing financial education to OFWs so that they may be assured of a better future when they go home for good.

“(Fortunately) CARD was one of the very few organizations that remained undeterred by the global pandemic, and through sheer persistence, adapted to the new normal by delivering its training programs through digital and online platforms,” he said.

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He also cited the graduates for taking time to join the training, and in the process, “transform (their) stories of defeat and desperation, to one that celebrates a victorious homecoming.”

He called the graduates “living proof and example of every OFW’s desire to build a better life for themselves and their families.”

The graduation came complete with awarding of certificates and testimonies from graduates

In his speech, Dr Aristotle Alip, chairman emeritus of CARD NGO in the Philippines, and founder of the conglomerate that make up CARD MRI (Mutually Reinforcing Institutions) said online training has paved the way for his group to reach more OFWs all over the world, including those who lost their jobs due to the pandemic.

Tunghayan ang isa na namang kwentong Dream Love

He said the huge number of OFWs forced to return home would further push up the country’s unemployment and poverty rates.

Latest government figures indicate nearly 50% of the country’s adult population is now out of work, while the poverty rate is expected to top 17.% of the total population of 110 million, or nearly 16 million people.

Alip said CARD MRI’s clients now total about 7 million, and by the year’s end, this number is expected to increase by about 10%, or 700,000.

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CARD MRI’s mission to help the country’s poor could get a boost if more people are able to access its financial literacy program, said Alip.

“The Philippines is ranked as among the lowest in terms of financial literacy which is quite sad, but again, this is an opportunity for all of us (to get the message across),” he added.

Alip said there has already been a number of requests to CARD “from many parts of the world” to bring its fin-lit program to them.

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Also among the speakers was Edna Aquino, who spoke of how CARD Foundation managed to hurdle initial challenges to bring its programs for OFWs across the digital divide, while Alex Aquino spoke of how online learning has helped the Foundation advance its mission to help Filipinos abroad.

Peregrino and Antonio take their oaths as graduates

Two graduates, Genalyn Antonio and Estrella Peregrino, gave testimony of how the training has helped them manage their finances better, and prepare for their eventual return home.

Watch The SUN Interviews Live tonight, from 9:30pm, to learn more about what CARD HK offers to OFWs in terms of handling their finances, starting their own businesses, and preparing for a more secure future when they return home.

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