The Provincial Government of Ilocos Norte (PGIN) announced the opening of summer jobs for Ilocanos in line with two employment programs reinforced through the ‘Task Force Trabaho’ (TFT).
In a press conference last March 21, Governor Imee R. Marcos said that government offices in the province, including Capitol’s, are now offering short-term jobs through the Department of Labor and Employment’s (DOLE) Special Program for the Employment of Students (SPES).
600 slots are allotted by PGIN, with the first batch of 300 youth now hired, data from Ilocos Norte Investment Center revealed.
The SPES beneficiaries, aged 15 to 25, will receive a salary of P311 per day, with sixty percent of the wage coming from TFT funds and the remaining forty percent of the hiring rate paid by DOLE.
They already underwent an orientation seminar yesterday, March 25, at the Ilocos Norte Capitol-Auditorium, Laoag City in preparation for their deployment on April 1 until the end of the 21-day contract.
Established under the Republic Act 9547, SPES is a work appreciation and bridging program which caters to high school, college, vocational and out-of-school youth.
It aims to inspire the youth to further their education by teaching them the valuable skills towards productive work. Tasks included are assisting office staff, clerical and simple utility work, green/environment-related activities, and computer data encoding.
Simultaneous with SPES, a job open tagged as Paoay Kumakaway! Summer Program is also being conducted by the Provincial Tourism Office.
Provincial Tourism Officer Ianree Raquel said that with the expected influx of tourists this Holy Week and upcoming summer break, PGIN hired some 260 Ilocanos—16 being the youngest—to address the demand on the 24 tourist centers across the province to have additional tourist aides, utility personnel and paramedics.
Raquel added that the hiring was based mainly on gauging the “communication skills and willingness” of the beneficiary.
Gov. Imee supported this, saying: “Our tourists always look for those who are ‘madaldal’ (talkative). So the hiring should not be limited to course; it should be personality basis.”
Consequent to the hiring, a series of trainings was also held last Wednesday, March 20, to prepare these beneficiaries for the demands of the tourism jobs.
With a salary of P125 for every 5 hours, they are hired for 2 months which started officially last Friday, March 22.
It can be remembered that last summer 2012, Ilocos Norte attained its highest tourist upsurge—680,000 tourists—leading to the same job openings with over 300 Ilocanos employed also for 2 months.
Wanting to strengthen this potential, Gov. Imee officially launched TFT during her State of the Province Address last July 2012 which worked in the same manner as SPES when it successfully generated short-term but gainful employment for 100 students and out-of-school youths last Christmas break.
Aside from poverty alleviation, such program under TFT was also incepted to raise the locals’ awareness of the growing tourism industry in Ilocos Norte.—Grazielle Mae A. Sales, PGIN-CMO