By Estrella Mai Dizon-Anonuevo (Executive Director, Global Academy on Migration and Development)


“ My father has been working in Italy for 6 years. He sends us money every month and it is a big help for my education and in our everyday expenses. I know the hardships and sacrifices that my father is facing right now.  That is why I am inspired to study well to at least give back for all the sacrifices of my father. I also dream of finishing my studies and find a job so that my father can go back home to be with us. We are so lucky that we have a good, hardworking and loving father. He is a role model, an inspiration for me.”  Eunice Angeli Joy Bello, 11 years old

This  and other stories on how remittances impact the lives of migrant families were highlighted in the Pinoy WISE internet TV episode this June 14, 2020 as part of Atikha’s series of activities in celebration of the International Day of Family Remittances (IDFR) on June 16, 2020.  The families shared how remittances paid for college education,  supported their daily needs, enable them to buy medicine, construct houses,  buy farms and start businesses to sustain their families. 

The iTV program also featured Pedro de Vasconcelos, Senior Technical Specialist of International Fund for Agriculture Development Financing Facility for Remittance who shared how the IDFR came about and the need to create awareness on the impact of migrant remittances on the lives of their families.   It also presented Bon Urven Dampor, Senior Manager of the Bank of the Philippine Islands who shared among others  the banks’ contribution by waving the charges and giving preferential foreign exchange rates so the families will receive more remittances which they need most in this time of pandemic.

On June 16, 2020, Atikha and Pinoy WISE International will feature the stories of migrant families on all its social media platforms.  It will also kick off  the “Balikabayanihan” Campaign,  a resource mobilization campaign to support repatriated OFWs.  There were already 50,000 repatriated migrants to the Philippines and about 200,000 more are expected to arrive this 2020 as a result of the pandemic.  Cognizant of the contribution of the more than 10 million migrants, “Balikabayanihan” to campaign aims to give back to the migrants.  Its objective is to mobilize volunteers and sponsors that can mentor the repatriated migrants and link them to training, capital, grants and other services to enable them to start or re-strategize their business.