150 single mothers complete ICT, skills training offered by CCCI, New Zealand
CEBU CITY, Philippines — At least 150 single mothers in Cebu are now ready to find employment.
These women recently completed the information and communication technology (ICT) and skills training that was organized by the Cebu Chamber of Commerce and Industries (CCCI) and the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFAT) through the Embassy of New Zealand in Manila.
This project is aimed at helping 150 solo mothers acquire technical and ICT skills, and at the same time teaching them to develop an entrepreneurial mindset, effective communication, and customer service.
With these skill sets, these mothers would have greater opportunities to enter the workforce or start their own business.
“We have been working with the Cebu Chamber of Commerce for years and have seen the positive impact this project has made for solo mothers. Hearing their stories as they become more confident in their abilities and [as they] take on new challenges for the betterment of themselves and their families continue to touch us,” said Peter Kell, the Ambassador of New Zealand to the Philippines.
Kell said New Zealand has been known worldwide for the empowerment of their women. They were the first democratic country to grant women the right to vote.
While they foster their relations with the Philippine government, the embassy also found means to help Filipino women, especially the single mothers in Cebu to thrive and improve their lives.
The New Zealand government poured in P2.5 million for this project. And as they near the end of its implementation, Kell is hopeful that other governments such as Canada and the United States of America, through their embassies, would also partner with the Philippine government to continue helping the single mothers.
CCCI’s partnership with the embassy of New Zealand covers the cities of Cebu and Naga, as well as the municipalities of Cordova, Balamban, and Bantayan.
This was started following the successful implementation of a similar program called ‘Entrepreneurial Training for Young Unmarried Women in Cebu City’ in 2018,. The project was a joint undertaking of CCCI and the New Zealand Embassy in Cebu City with technical support from the DICT Central Visayas office.
The 2018 program graduated 23 solo mothers.
This time, CCCI and New Zealand Embassy in Manila expanded the coverage of the program to already include solo mothers coming from other parts of Cebu province.
The project was initially set for implementation from June 2019 to September 2021, but it took a 10-month setback after the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the COVID-19 pandemic a global health crisis in March of 2020.
And as the pandemic forced the world to shift to a society driven by digital technology, the course also gained more relevance and the format of the training shifted from face-to-face to virtual.
Using the grant from New Zealand, CCCI distributed tablets and internet load cards to the participants throughout the duration of their virtual training.
The ICT training was facilitated by Claire Fernandez, head of DICT Leyte Provincial Office and Engr. Royden Rusiana, head of DICT Cebu Provincial Office.
The Life Skills Training was under Alexander Vincent Ruñez, Founder and Lead Trainer of AXL Trainings. / dcb
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