I thank Ms. Gennie Kim for giving me the opportunity to meet the staff of DAWN or Development Action for Women Network. Their Executive Director Ms. Carmelita Nuqui, Alternative Livelihood Program Coordinator Ms. Mary Joy Barcelona and DAWN volunteer Ms. Gemma Comiso (aka Gemma Gumamela of Radio OFW) were in Seoul from August 26th to 31st.
The staff of DAWN were in Korea in connection with the project of Ms. Gennie Kim on “Socio-Economic Cooperation for Returned Filipino Women Migrants and their Children at the Development Action for Women Network (DAWN)”, chosen by the IOM Migration Research and Training Center for their “Call for Project Proposals on ASEAN Migrants’ Contribution to Social Development of their Home Countries”. The information about the grant came from Ms. Jasmine Lee. Four proposals from the Philippines were selected by the IOM.
Photos from Ms. Gennie Kim’s website
The project proposal by Ms. Gennie Kim is centered on helping former Filipino women immigrants in Korea to help themselves with the assistance of DAWN, which is an NGO that assists Filipino women migrants in Japan. They started their organization in 1996 and their 20-year experience as an NGO would be valuable in helping Ms. Gennie in her project.
From their first day in Korea until their last, they had a full schedule everyday meeting with Filipino community leaders and those who may be involved with the project one way or another. Among them are Ms. Elena Dela Cruz of Seoul Global Center, Ms. Katherine Corteza of Itaewon Global Center, Ms. Jasmine Lee, Ms. Fe Kim of FKSA (Filipino Korea Spouses Association), the leaders of FEWA (Filipino EPS Workers Association), HRD Korea, Woongjin Foundation and Ambassador Raul Hernandez and Vice Consul Ella Mitra of the Philippine Embassy.
One of the services offered by DAWN is their alternative livelihood program called “SIKHAY” (Sikap-Buhay). They showed us some of the products made by the women ~ scarves, table runner, pencil cases, pouches, wallets and crossbags. I bought two cross bags but how I wish I also bought a scarf or two. The colors of their products are perfect for the coming fall and winter seasons.
Though I met them on only three occasions during their visit, I feel that I learned so much from them. Ms. Mel, Ms. Joy and Ms. Gemma devote their time and energy in helping women empower themselves through this organization. I observed the same in Ms. Gennie Kim ~ who is also tireless in her efforts to help her countrymen in Korea. Their selflessness is worth emulating ~ I am hoping for the success of this project by Ms. Gennie Kim and DAWN.