“One of the challenges of implementing migration and development policies is the lack of training of front line staff to implement initiatives on migration and development. Although there are initiatives in setting up migration committees and one stop resource centers for migrants and families, oftentimes, they lack coherent and relevant program that will address the issues and maximize the opportunities from working abroad for the development of their migrants, their families and communities” explains Mai Dizon Anonuevo, executive director of Atikha.
This was also voiced out by the participants of the Peer to Peer Learning. “….for Atikha it was most grateful for me knowing your work and be able to learn from it.….. and hoping for your help in setting up West Java Migrant Service Center. ” Hermasari Dharmabumi, representative of West Java provincial government. Learning from the different participants especially from Indonesia and Nepal the need to provide training to local stakeholders, Atikha through the Global Academy has agreed to look at the needs and design and implement relevant training of trainers program.
Atikha is a community based NGO established since 1996 and has been in the forefront in developing innovative approaches to address the challenges and opportunities of migration at the national and local level. The development and conduct of the training program of Atikha has been made possible because of the support of International Development Agencies such as the International Fund for Agriculture Development, EC-UN Joint Migration and Development Initiatives, UN Women, International Labor Organization, International Organization for Migration. The government agencies such as the Department of Labor and Employment( DOLE), the National Reintegration Center for OFWs (NRCO) and Overseas Workers and Welfare Administration ( OWWA) and selected local government units and private sector have also supported these training program for front line staff.
In partnership with national and local governments and international development agencies, Atikha was able to train a total of 1,200 front line staff who are implementing migration and development initiatives from 2017-2019. These includes members and staff of migrant organizations, local and national government, cooperatives, civic and faith based organizations and other organization implementing migration and development initiatives. Atikha conducted training involving migration stakeholders not only from the Philippines but also from Singapore, Hongkong, Italy, Qatar, Malaysia, Thailand, United Arab Emirates, Myanmar, Lao PDR and Cambodia.
The most sought after training program of Atikha is the conduct of training of trainers on financial literacy also known as Family and Income Management Training. This is because despite long years of work in destination countries, migrants and their families still do not have savings and investment to enable the migrants to come home having achieved their goals for migration. The training does not only address financial issues but also family issues that drains the resources of the migrants. The training also prepares them for their eventual return to their origin country. Atikha also mainstreamed gender responsiveness in all of its training program ensuring that the issues of women and men are addressed and encourages shared responsibility in family and income management.
Another important training also requested is the Mainstreaming of Migration and Development in Local Governance. Aside from understanding migration and development in the local context, the training showcases best practices of local government units in ensuring that economic and social services are provided to migrants and families. It also exhibits multi-stakeholder partnerships including private sector and civil society programs and services that minimize the social cost and maximize the gains of migration.
These trainings are to be facilitated by the Global Academy on Migration and Development to share the good practices being implemented both by government, NGOs and private sector in the Philippines.