Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Jun 05 18, 2:08 pm

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OPEN LETTER: Balikbayan to disappointed family, friends of OFWs over ‘pasalubong’

by | Feature

Jun. 05, 18 | 2:08 pm

Having a week or month of vacation is probably the day that most overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) all over the world are always looking forward to. But a Filipino based in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia shares a sad reality about family members and friends of OFWs who get disappointed over ‘pasalubong’ or gifts from abroad.

In an open letter on his Facebook account, the OFW working as an administrative assistant in a hospital in Riyadh expresses his disappointment towards people–families and friends–who seemed to be more excited about “pasalubong” rather than being reunited with their family members who had been away, toiling hard overseas.

Raymond Lopez says: “Minsan, nakakadala talagang magbigay ng pasalubong kapag nag-babalikbayan ka. Bigyan mo man sila o hindi, meron at meron silang masasabi sa’yo, na kesyo “ito lang”, “nagbigay ka pa”, “kuripot naman”, “‘yan ba ‘yung abroad?”, “tatlong-taon sa abroad heto na ‘yun,” Lopez shared on Facebook.

READ: Top 6 things only balikbayans will understand

Lopez explains that it is not an OFW’s responsibility to distribute gifts or money when they return to the Philippines.

“Una po sa lahat, hindi po nagbabalikbayan ang isang OFW para bigyan o pasalubungan kayong lahat. Walang obligasyon ang isang OFW na bigyan kayo ng mga tsokolate, sabon, pabango at kung anu-ano pa,” the OFW explains.

“Umuuwi ang isang OFW hindi para magregalo, mamigay o magpamudmod ng kung ano. Umuuwi sila para pansamantalang makapagpahinga, makapaglibang at makasama ang kani-kanilang pamilya’t mahal sa buhay,” he adds.

Lopez also underscores that being an OFW takes a lot of sacrifice, both physical and emotional, while they are away. Hence, relatives and friends of OFWs, he explains, should be appreciative of what they can give, no matter how small or big it is.

“Sana, subukan n’yo ‘hong mag-abroad, para po maranasan n’yo rin ang mga sakripisyo namin. ‘Yung mga pagtitipid, pangungulila at kalungkutang nararanasan dito at ng mga kapwa-OFW namin sa buong mundo. Matuto po sana kayong magpasalamat o makuntento, dahil kahit papaano’y naabutan at naalala kayo nung tao,” his post reads.

READ: 6 things balikbayans often hear from relatives

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It has a print run of 60,000 copies and 250,000 readership per week; bolstered by 1 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.

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