Financial Literacy and Addressing Barriers to Reintegration of Overseas Filipinos and Their Families
“Bakit ngayon lang ninyo naisip gawin itong (financial literacy) seminar na ito? Milyon na ang nawaldas ko!” (Why did you only think of implementing this financial literacy seminar now? I have wasted millions of pesos!) commented Minda Teves, one of the migrant leaders from Torino who participated in our financial literacy training of trainers program in Rome. She became emotional during the seminar as she related the dependency of the members of her family in the province of Mindanao and how they withdraw from her whenever she did not give any remittance to them. She hated dealing with numbers during the training but she painstakingly learned how to compute her budget and savings and investment for retirement even if it meant for her working till midnight. She was so passionate about learning to become a trainer on financial literacy since she believed that this is a very important intervention for the migrants to make their dreams a reality. Currently, Minda leads the Pinoy Worldwide Initiative for Savings Investment and Entrepreneurship (PINOY WISE) financial counselors of Northern Italy. She mentors other financial counselors in the conduct of financial literacy of Filipino migrants from Milan, Brescia, Torino, Biella, Padova and Modena in Italy and leads the mobilization of migrant investment towards Sorosoro Ibaba Development Cooperative (SIDC) migrant cooperative, the largest agri-based cooperative in the Philippines.