TESDA pushes for job creations right at home

MANILA, Oct. 2 (PNA) -- The Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) is pushing for job creation right at the very home of every Filipino.

TESDA Director General Joel Villanueva made this move as he backed efforts to address poverty issues in provinces.

Villanueva said that under his leadership, TESDA aims to provide technical education and skills training to enhance wage-employment opportunities of every Filipino and also offer livelihood options to generate business “in the home setting.”

“When a person starts earning his own income from home, not only does this build self-esteem for himself and his family, he also helps the nearby sari-sari store owner make living, perhaps, the local labandera as well, the magtataho, and the other members of the community,” he said when he spoke before an event for the Skills Training Advocating Reliance and Self-Employment (STARS) Program in Bohol recently.

STARS Program, which main proponent is Bohol Gov. Edgar Chatto, is a community-based project in partnership with the local government unit in the province.

“I believe that if TESDA can create livelihood opportunities for people in their homes or home provinces, then there will not be any need for them to live in the streets of the metropolis and risk their health as well as the safety of their children,” he said.

Villanueva said his vision was for TESDA to be a major contributor in the government’s poverty reduction thrust by enhancing the productivity and employability of the Filipino middle-level manpower through quality technical and vocations skills development.

And that’s the reason why, he said, he supported the STARS Program since it complemented very well the “Real Deal” of TESDA strategy in “reaching the grassroots, empowering the reached, assuring quality skills training, and lifelong education to develop and enable learners with employability and livelihood skills.”

The STARS Program includes unsophisticated yet highly technical courses that apply to domestic settings such as tour guiding, manicure/pedicure, hair styling or cutting, driving, cell phone repair, and masseuse training, among others.

Villanueva believes that the exponential effects of the STARS project could create an impact that can be more profound than sending workers abroad as OFWs.

He then assured that the STARS project will be made as a model in designing other TESDA programs while he expressed his plan to make the most out of the agency’s technical-vocational education and training for social integration and rural development initiatives.

Villanueva said that TESDA might launch market surveys to determine the market potentials for the skills to be offered in the trainings and identify the kind of support to help the STARS program achieve its self-employment objectives.

TESDA, he said, would also look into the possibility of building informal sector associations; linking trainees with specialized training providers using the agency’s scholarship vouchers; providing supplementary training in basic competences; and arranging post-training support like marketing, access to credit and business advice, etc., among others, to advance the intent of the STARS Program.

“The best way to remove families from the clutches of dehumanizing poverty is to first remove the poverty mindset that numbs them into inaction,” Villanueva said. (PNA)

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