THE Mindanao Migrants Center for Empowering Actions Inc. (MMCEAI) is pushing for the implementation of City Ordinance 056-08 that has been that has been delayed since it was approved in 2008.

The ordinance provides for the establishment of the Overseas Filipino Workers (OFW) Center.

Under the ordinance, the center is designed look into the concerns of the OFWs, most especially the distressed workers, and their families and a mechanism to track where the people are going abroad to work, how many OFWs in the city and their family members.

“The immediate implementation of the ordinance and the establishment of the center will translate to programs, budget, projects, services intended for the OFWs and their families,” Inorisa Sialana-Elento, MMCEAI executive director said on Monday’s edition of Kapehan Sa Dabaw at the SM City Annex Ecoland, Davao City.

She said one of their biggest challenges is lack of information as to how many workers are working overseas.

The last record regarding the number working migrants from Davao City was still way back in 2000 stating around 10,000 Dabawenyos working abroad.

“We already have the necessary rules and regulations stipulated in the ordinance, kulang nalang talaga ang pag implement nito, years passed but still stagnant pa ang ordinance,” she added.

She surmised that the center has not been put up until now for lack of funding from the City Government.

“We may need at least P2 million be allocated just to make the office functioning and start with the database to trace what countries most of these OFWs are working. But maybe this is the problem, we lack budget for it,” Elento said.

Under the ordinance, the center will conduct OFW profiling, ensures gender sensitive education and trainings for all migrant workers by establishing standards of course contents integrated in their Pre-employment Orientation Seminar (PEOS), legal, health, and livelihood assistance, among others.

Meanwhile, as a kick-off to the International Migrants Day on December 18, the Anak OFW will conduct a festival on December 6 in People’s Park, this City which is expected to gather some 200 “Anak OFWs”.

On its 6th year, the festival will hold anew interactive activities, games workshops in a bid to establish rapport through sharing of experiences as children of the OFWs.