How a Desperate OFW Hangs on to Faith

Another reproduction of a story under the Penpoint of ‘Pinoy News’ of Kuwait Times, originally published March 12,1995. The special Sunday supplement used to occupy the center pages of KT. The story is about a Filipina’s faith in an unknown person’s goodness of heart. It may be a 20-year-old story but it still sure can inspire.

Penpoint
Pinoy News Here To Serve

OVER a month after Pinoy News first came off the press, a letter (addressed to Pinoy News) was received from a Filipina seeking for help. As per her request, an enclosed letter was personally handed over to Assistant Labour Attache and Welfare Officer Ofelia Castro at the Labour Office stationed at the Philippine Embassy. (After giving the note, I remember I had doubts then if Ms. Castro would have the chance to attend to the complaint at all, being a regular witness to the daily heavy load being faced by the Labour Office). For a while, I, myself, forgot all about the note.

PN1

Recently, another letter was received from the same Filipina. Reading through the note, I found out that the help was actually extended to her by the Labour Office, personally attended to and followed-up by the hard-working lady officer. At the time I handed over another enclosed letter to the said officer, I learned that she has been trying to contact the Filipina, whom, as claimed, is suffering from a throat affliction (suspected throat cancer?) and has asked the Philippine Embassy to work for her repatriation.PN2

The Filipina’s second letter, addressed again to Pinoy News, has actually brought light to her whereabouts at this very moment, of which Ms. Castro has been trying to locate in the last couple of months. As there is no other way of contacting her, her employers having cut off all kinds of communication between them and the embassy, Ms. Castro, has requested, through this column, to inform the concerned helpless woman.PN3

It is interesting to note that, indirectly, Pinoy News is serving or helping some of its readers. It has been mentioned, time and again, in the last issues of Penpoint, how some of the readers have brought their problems and concerns through telephone calls. Had this Filipina had some access to the phone, she could have called and presented her problem the same way as others did.

PN4Desperate for help, she posted instead a letter.

A very strong faith (not knowing whether she will be heard or not) is manifested here of which Pinoy News would not hesitate to acknowledge!

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Here’s a message for you, brave Filipina – your ticket has already been provided by the Labour Office and you can inform your employers, having given already their willingness to send you back to the Philippines (that is, according to them, if you can provide your own ticket), to contact Ms. Castro at the Philippine Embassy so your repatriation could be worked out in the earliest possible time. As to your request for the postal address of the Philippine Embassy, here it is – P.O. Box 26288, Safat 13123, Kuwait. Ms. Castro said that she will inform your cousin, as you requested, about your situation. (Thanks by the way for the stamp you enclosed, although you should have not bothered at all).

We, at the Kuwait Times, sincerely hope for the fulfillment of your greatest wish to go home to the Philippines.

— Freda E. Contreras-Naig

About Author

Freda Editha O. Contreras
Writing is a God-given talent which I try to utilize the good way. I used it as a means to earn a living, my very first job after graduating from college, when I got hired as an Information Writer by the Provincial Government of Antique through Governor Enrique A. Zaldivar in January 1982. By profession, I am a Registered Nurse, and was only able to practice it when I got recruited to work in a private hospital in Kuwait. This was in November 1987 and since then I have been living in Kuwait, now retired since June 2002. Because of my knack in writing I got hired in 1994 to write for Kuwait Times and later became an Editor of 'Pinoy News' a weekly supplement of KT. In March 1996 I published the very first independent Filipino newspaper in Kuwait and the Gulf bannered as Pinoy Expat News or PEN. The paper lasted for only 10 weekly issues. This was followed by another publication and came out first as an insert of an ad paper and later as a separate tabloid. I used then 'Pinoy News' as it was my idea the first time it was used for Kuwait Times. This again failed and produced only three weekly issues. I then turned to the Internet and in 1999 I got hired as a Contributing Editor of Suite101.com, a writers' portal on the web. The last of my articles was published December 31, 2002 but my topic 'Overseas Filipino Workers' was still visible until January 2006. All the 38 articles I wrote have been compiled into a book which I published in August 2007. I discovered blogging in 2006 but was not really serious about my writing. I wrote according to my whim. Having this blog under my own domain name is now a welcome development and I plan to concentrate again in writing. As is commonly said: "A writer will always be a writer." http://fredacontreras.com/

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