Beginning March, Lenovo will provide complimentary computer training lessons to Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) and their dependents or relatives to enhance their personal computer (PC) skills for increased career and business opportunities in a technology-savvy society.
The initiative is a result of Lenovo’s partnership with Microsoft Philippines, the Overseas Workers Welfare Association (OWWA) and the Blas F. Ople Training Center and is aimed at leveraging technology to empower and enable greater career confidence.
Learn & Earn Through Computers
Dubbed “Learn & Earn Through Computers”, Lenovo’s one-day seminar is part of Microsoft’s Tulay Program, a 10-day information and technology skills training course available for free to OFWs and their families. The Tulay Program is conducted twice a month in 18 Tulay Community-based Technology Learning Centers (CTLCs) across the country, and eight CTLCs overseas including Malaysia and Singapore.
Lenovo’s course is divided into two modules: the Learn module, which focuses on utilizing PC skills for educational purposes—such as accessing online tutorials for distance learning, and portals such as news websites and blogs, which may be relevant sources of information to OFWs. The second module is the Earn module, centered around PC-based career opportunities, such as running a home business and making use of the Internet for job prospects.
Vicky Agorrilla, Country General Manager, Lenovo Philippines said: “Lenovo recognizes the important contribution of the OFWs who are the unsung heroes of the Philippine economy. Through this initiative, Lenovo aims to empower the OFWs through the use of technology to make their lives more fun and productive. The “Learn and Earn Through Computers” program serves as a testament to the company’s commitment to empowering consumers.”
“A partnership with Lenovo is definitely one of the highlights that mark our seventh year,” said Dondi Mapa, National Technology Officer, Microsoft Philippines. The Tulay Program has been consistently expanding over the years in terms of reach and also in terms of training content. The ‘Learn & Earn Through Computers’ course brings the participants’ learning to a higher level. With Lenovo’s support and contribution, we can raise awareness and train the OFWs and their families to recognize the myriad opportunities and harness their unlimited potential.”
About The Tulay Program
Microsoft Philippines started the Tulay Program in 2004 in partnership with the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) and its attached agency, OWWA, and its non-profit organization partner, the Blas F. Ople Policy Center and Training Institute. Tulay Program is under the Microsoft Unlimited Potential Community Skills Program.
The 10-day Tulay Program consists of modules to teach skills in Microsoft Word, Microsoft Powerpoint, Microsoft Excel and Microsoft Internet Explorer. At the end of the program, graduates are presented a certificate issued by Microsoft, OWWA, and the Ople Training Center. As of December 2010, Tulay has trained over 40,000 OFWs and family members.
With this training, participants—especially the OFWs—are armed with skills to maximize their potential while working abroad, and help them gain a competitive edge should they return home or pursue another career. The Tulay Program benefits OFWs who have not completed their formal education, as well as those who have, inspiring more confidence in their various career paths and offering greater employment prospects.
Likewise, relatives of OFWs who attend the training benefit from learning how to keep up with technology, so they can communicate better with their loved ones abroad through email, instant messaging, video calls and more, or even develop skill sets required for managing online businesses.
As of September 2009, there are 1.9 million OFWs, based on the data of the National Census Office. The total remittance sent during the period April to September 2009 was estimated at 138.5 billion pesos. Among the occupation groups, OFWs working as laborers or unskilled workers posted the highest cash remittance of 18.0 billion pesos.