Being part of an OFW family means that you are either sending or receiving hard earned monthly remittances. Sometimes though, having a lot of money in your hands creates an illusion that you and your family now have the license to spend and buy anything you want. There is a rush of excitement in being able to afford appliances, eat out, build a big house, travel, and give away money to loved ones.
There is nothing wrong with enjoying what you worked for. You must consider though the objectives behind the decision for a family member to work abroad. Focus on sending the kids to school, building a decent house, repaying debts, and establishing a financial foundation. Remember that our ability to work is not eternal. Retirement, sickness, layoffs, and other reasons could cause you to lose your source of income. Thus, it is important for an OFW family to have a wise financial plan.
Remember how God gave us the example of the ant who labored well during summer to prepare for the rainy season (Prov. 6:6-11). Take the necessary steps to inform yourself and your whole family about financial planning, which includes saving and investing. Teach your children through example how to be wise in saving and spending.
God meant us to be good stewards of His blessings and resources. The reality is the supply of money is not endless. Be wise and plan.
- Seek a godly and trustworthy financial adviser who could guide you and your family.
- Have a financial plan for your family as you (or your spouse) embark on an overseas job. If you are already an OFW, it is not too late to start planning financially.
- Begin by recording expenses to monitor cash flow. This will help you control expenses as well plan for investments.
- Create a fund that you could use in case of emergency. In this way, you will be able to stick to your financial plan.
- Plan for the day when you will no longer work abroad. Improve on the skills that you or your spouse has that you can use later on.
- Continue to seek God’s guidance in your financial planning
- Practical Christian Living by Bertram Lim
- Money, Possessions and Eternity by Randy Alcorn
- Pera O Puri : The Christian and His Finances by Ed Lapiz
- Siksik, Liglig at Umaapaw (Work, Invest, Save, Give, Atbp.) by Ed Lapiz
- Online resources for OFWs : www.globalofw.com
- Ang Pera ay Hindi Bitin by Ardy Roberto
- OFW expenditures: http://www.philippinestoday.net/
- The remittances of Filipino migrant workers reached $17.3 billion in 2009 (BSP).
- The Philippines has more than 8 million OFWs and at least 60% of their families remain poor. (Fr. Edwin Corros)
- Most migrant workers are classified as unskilled such as house-hold service works. ((Business Mirror 2010)
- The 2009 top 5 countries of sources of OFW remittances are : United States, Canada, Saudi Arabia, United Kingdom and Japan. (POEA 2009)
Many OFW’s return to the Philippines hoping to invest their hard-earned money in ways that will bring comfort to their families and a good financial future for themselves. Unfortunately too many purchases and wrong investments can rob OFW’s of their dreams. In this drama, a couple faces disappointment when their investments fall apart. The course of their lives changes when they attend a cell group that is discussing financial management and how to plan for the future. Learn financial management principles and about giving support to your family from our guest counselor and financial consultant, Emma Yuhico.