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Jul 02 17, 9:11 am

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These stars are former OFWs

by | Entertainment

Jul. 02, 17 | 9:11 am

Behind every success is a story of unceasing determination and perseverance. Life is an uphill battle, through thick and thin, as well as ups and downs.

Some may look up to triumphant people for their stories of rags to riches, never say never, or even of overcoming obstacles. A number of inspiring success stories are from celebrities whose lives are an open book. Just like any ordinary people, they once lived a life far from comfort or luxury. Some celebrities even had to work overseas to provide for their families. Among the former Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) who later rose to fame are as follows.

From security and emergency room personnel to ‘Ultimate Hearthrob’

Piolo Pascual began his acting career on teen variety show That’s Entertainment when he was in third year high school. A week before his Star Circle launch in ABS-CBN, Pascual had to migrate to the United States, where his mother lived.

Prior to his biggest showbiz break, the film and television actor, singer, model, and now producer worked as an emergency room representative in California. In an interview with YES! Magazine, Pascual said he even worked as a security personnel at the Academy Awards and went to offices in Beverly Hills for commission-based “advertising”. In between jobs, he attended acting workshops. Despite his mom’s opposition, Pascual decided to pursue his passion for acting and went home to Manila.

From amateur band vocalist to international singer


Credit: Pinterest

Life for American rock band Journey’s lead singer was never easy. Arnel Pineda was only 15 years old when he started a career in singing. He used to sing along with his bandmates in a pizza restaurant in Manila and began performing in various clubs within Luzon.

After a number of disbandments and band formations, a talent agent spotted Pineda and his band during one of their gigs. They were offered to perform in a well-known entertainment restaurant in Hong Kong for six nights a week. For several years, Pineda worked overseas until he suffered health problems that almost destroyed his voice. He returned to Hong Kong and continued his career in 1998, 10 years before his debut as the lead vocalist of Journey.

From dancer-entertainer to actress-comedienne


Credit: Pinterest

Behind her contagious laughter and hilarious jokes is a story of humble beginnings. With the urge to give her family a decent home, Marietta Subong, better known as Pokwang, worked as a group dancer in Japan. In a span of two years, she only had the chance to return to the Philippine four times, after each 6-month contract. It was also in Japan where she met the father of her only daughter.

Japan started to impose stricter policies on OFWs, making Pokwang work in Abu Dhabi as a domestic helper for six months. During her stay in the country, her son was diagnosed with a brain tumor. In spite of Pokwang’s desire to return home, her employer turned down her request. Pokwang’s son died while she was in Abu Dhabi.

From janitor to ‘Primetime King’


Credit: Pinterest

His 2000-square-meter house may have been featured on television as one of the most luxurious, but it took him blood, sweat, and tears to rise from poverty to prosperity. Coco Martin has already begun an acting career in the independent film industry when he decided to work overseas. Just like other OFWs, he was in high hopes of finding fortune abroad.

Martin shared to Star Studio Magazine in an interview his experience during his nine-month stint as a janitor. He had to wake up as early as one in the morning to clean up a bingo parlor before it opens at seven. Martin admitted he was in daze whenever cleaning the toilet.

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THE FILIPINO TIMES is the biggest and most trusted Filipino newspaper in the UAE.

It has a print run of 60,000 copies and 250,000 readership per week; bolstered by 2.5 million visitors to its website every month. It also has an e-newsletter sent to its 250,000 subscribers every day.

The Filipino Times is FREE and has the widest targeted circulation across the 7 emirates of the UAE.

With more than 2,500 strategic distribution spots, TFT is available where the Filipinos are - at Smart Bus Shelters, Metro Stations, restaurants, supermarkets, schools, airport lounges, Emirates and Etihad Philippine-bound flights, churches, Filipino community events and many more.

THE FILIPINO TIMES. We are where the Filipinos are.

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