To seek for better opportunities. The very reason why most, if not each, Filipinos test the waters of land and sea far away from home.
To many others who are not overseas Filipino workers or OFWs, as we call them, or those who don’t have a family or friend like them or those who don’t have a better understanding, these Kabayans mean free flowing cash, latest gadgets, imported chocolates and foods, branded clothes and shoes, etc. You name it and they got it. If they don’t, well, they’re selfish, proud, no good son, daughter, sister, brother, relative or friend.
Not everyone knows the reason or reasons why they left the country except for wanting a greener pasteur. Not everyone knows the difficulties they went through in applying from agency to agency in and out of their hometowns praying their application requirements be complete and accepted as they may have traveled far and was almost lost or was lost with nobody to accompany them. Some might be fearful of not reaching their target destination of agency buildings that are not too accessible for safe public transportation or in which building or agency names are too tiny and old to read and decipher and finally be back home with the confort of familiar faces and places. Not everyone knows how they wished these agencies are registered and legit and will not run away with their hard earned savings money or to some, loaned money from high interest rates lenders or lending agencies or money from selling or pawned lands, farm animals, or family members or relatives.
Surely, they had a choice, all of us have, but they chose to sail the waves in the HOPES of a better life, career, and pay.
Not everyone knows it wasn’t easy. Who would want to work on a foreign country far away from where you grew up with family and friends who loves and cares for you. Who would want to work in a culture either there is equality or not in citizenship, religion, education or gender but existing discrimination and bullying prevails. And despite these difficulties affecting them emotionally, spiritually, physically, or financially, THEY ALL CONTINUE TO DO THEIR JOBS. That’s how FILIPINOS are, SURVIVORS.
I hope some people back home would understand the sentiments of KABAYANS and not see them as a mere instrument to gain bigger income from by overcharging in daily and usual services, expecting more than the regular payment, and implementing more taxes of what was bought from hard earned money or to some from what was asked, given, or picked up from streets. They too are humans, if they earned more than you do (surely, the work was more harder than you do), they deserve it and more because unlike the rest in the country, THEY ARE AWAY FROM HOME.