Future financial security for young Filipino workers is highly at risk
A Dependency Culture
“I was not able to save money for myself due to my parents' dependency on my earnings. My dad told me he was tired from working as a taxi driver for 20 years and as I definitely value his hardship, it is now my turn to help them,” says Frank, a 23 year-old Filipino who works as a hotel staff member in Manila.
80% of Frank's salary goes to parents while the remaining 20% he keeps for food and transport. He also insists his situation cannot be prevented. “I know it's sad but I can't blame my parents. Because both of them were uneducated and are now older, no job would suit them here.” He also wishes to buy an electric guitar but he can't even save money for himself.
Frank studied Electrical Engineering at the University of Perpetual Help in Cavite, but dropped out in his 3rd year due to his parent's financial incapability. He had good grades and never failed an exam. “We saw Frank performed well at school, but since we had run out of finances, we had no choice but to stop him studying," says Frank's mother
Filipinos have a unique culture called 'Bayanihan' (meaning 'Brotherhood') which obliges everyone to help others when they are need, resulting in returned benefit in the future. This is inline with The Golden Rule. The 'Bayanihan' culture portrays a group of Filipino countrymen carrying one side of a big hut each until it reaches the final location for settlement.
Over 30% of young Filipinos at college are forced to stop studying and work because of financial issues. Examples of financial help include paying parents' electric, water and internet bills, while some pay for younger siblings' school expenses.
“If you're a job seeker here in the Philippines, you must consider having a 'back-up' for you to get a good job,” Frank explains A 'back-up' is the name commonly given to friends or relatives from a certain company who help you work thanks to their reference. “Without aback-up your job prospects do not look good here, especially in the Financial Districts in Manila.”