At the very start of pandemic, we already knew that one of the most affected sectors of the Filipino community are the Overseas Filipino Workers (OFW). As they say it in one commentary from Channel News Asia, it is the “worst time ever to be an OFW”.
Over half a million of them lost their jobs and were repatriated and were sent home to their provinces up to date. The government is also expecting between 70,000 to 130,000 more OFWs to return.
But the misery is not just about losing the only job that the whole family relies on. The cost of emotional distress due to being away with their loved ones amid these catastrophic events should also be looked into.
One of those who earned the courage to come home amid pandemic and be with her family is You-Ann Salaga, an ex-domestic helper in Singapore for 8 years, a single mother to her kids, and now an entrepreneur in Davao City.
To You-Ann, she may not earn as much as she did abroad, but that did not stop her from leaving the job that she had in Singapore. What’s important is that she has saved enough to start anew in Davao, in the loving arms of her children.
So the question is… how did she do it?
Here is the secret from You-Ann that you should know: Learn to make money on Sundays.
Sundays are the most-awaited day of the week for domestic helpers. It’s the only time of the week when they can take a long break, hang out with their Filipino friends, or go window shopping in Lucky Plaza.
For You-ann, Sunday is another day to make a living. She attended free cooking baking classes during her day-off until she started baking Filipino delicacies and selling them to her Filipina friends in Singapore.
This became her part-time business, and the money she earned went to her savings. Not on bags, shoes, nor nice-to-have items for herself. Not even to her family back home.
She learned that working abroad doesn’t mean that the money that she earns is not only for her family’s needs during the time being. As You-ann continued to support her kids from day-to-day, she also made sure that she’s saving for retirement and emergency, such as the pandemic.
Learn more on how You-ann managed to survive and thrive as she faced the challenges brought about to her and her family by the pandemic: