In partnership with the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), the Land Bank of the Philippines (LANDBANK) is gearing up to distribute cash assistance to overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) who have been displaced due to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.
Through the OFW program DOLE AKAP (Abot Kamay ang Pagtulong) around 135,720 displaced land-based and sea-based OFWs will each receive one-time financial assistance of P10,000 or $200, or its equivalent currency in the host country.
Beneficiaries are composed of about 85,720 on-site OFWs based abroad, and 50,000 repatriated OFWs or “Balik Manggagawa” already in the country and failed to return to their work abroad due to the lockdowns.
Eligible repatriates can claim the cash assistance through the LANDBANK Remittance System (LBRS) from any LANDBANK branches visa PESONet. This transaction is free of charge.
A total of 85,720 OFWs is expected to receive their cash assistance from POLO offices through LANDBANK’s Outgoing Telegraphic Transfer (OTT), without cable charges and bank commission.
“LANDBANK is closely working with DOLE in assisting our OFWs to weather work disruptions and circumstances brought about by the COVID-19 crisis. This means immediately delivering financial support to our OFWs, wherever they are in the world,” says Cecilia Borromeo, LANDBANK President, and CEO.
How to Apply for OFW Assistance
To avail of the program, overseas Filipinos must contact the POLO in their host country. OFWs who are currently in the Philippines must visit the nearest OWWA regional office.
OFWs just need to submit a certificate of employment issued by their agencies, which will be used to evaluate if they’re qualified for the cash assistance.
APPLICATION PROCEDURE FOR OFWS WHO HAVE BEEN REPATRIATED/BALIK-MANGGAGAWA
1. OFWs who have been repatriated to the Philippines and Balik-Manggagawa shall submit the following to the OWWA Regional Welfare Offices (RWOs):
Accomplished Application Form for Special Cash Assistance, downloadable at the www.dole-akap.owwa.gov.ph;
Copy of Passport or Travel Document;
Proof of overseas employment, i.e,. valid verified overseas employment, OEC, residence I.D.s, visa/re-entry visa, among others, or permit to stay in the receiving country; and
Proof of loss of employment on account of COVID19.
2. After submission of complete documents, the RWOs shall evaluate the application within 5 working days, and notify OFWs on the status of his/her application within 5 working days.
3. If the application is approved, the DOLE Regional Office shall release the P10,000 through money remittance / Peso Net.
[Note: For Filipino workers in the formal sector affected by the ECQ, see 5,000 Pesos Assistance for Workers under the COVID-19 Adjustment Measures Program (CAMP)]
Guidelines on "DOLE-AKAP for OFWs:
1. Download application (Click here) and send to email@example.com together with required documents.
2. POLO will evaluate and process the application.
3. POLO to notify OFW about the status of the application.
4. Once approved, POLO to transfer ($200/P10,000) financial assistance thru bank account.
5. Please click the link below to download the DOLE-AKAP application form.
OFWs who are still abroad may also make a repatriation request so that DOLE can arrange for their return to the Philippines.
Currently, 2,468 OFWs received their cash assistance with P24.68 million already released.