Section: Origin

An orientation provides reliable and relevant information to people who plan to migrate and work abroad.

Case study

Pre-Departure Orientation Seminars (PDOS) are mandatory information programmes that provide comprehensive guidance to Overseas Filipino Workers (OFW) who plan to migrate. The programme provides a one-day seminar of seven modules over six hours. Migrants are provided modules on (a) migration realities; (b) the destination country profile; (c) their employment contract; (d) health and safety; (e) financial literacy; (f) available government programmes and services for OFWs; and (g) travel procedures and tips.
Government agencies, NGOs or private actors act as service providers and deliver the seminars. The Philippines Red Cross is a service provider and has hosted PDOS with the Government of the Philippines and recruitment agencies. In addition to the seminars, the National Society provides psychosocial support to family members of OFWs to cope with the changes to family structure caused by overseas employment. The Philippines government provides other services for OFWs to complement PDOS. Services include Pre-Departure Education Seminars and information and assistance for migrants at the airport prior to departure.

Other examples

Similar programmes are provided in Nepal (Pre-Departure Orientation) and in Indonesia (Final Pre-Departure Briefing). Both are mandated by law. In Indonesia, the programme is free, whilst in Nepal it is offered through accredited service providers for a fee.

Assessment of impact and reach

PDOS were provided to almost 500,000 overseas Filipino workers in 2010. More recent information not provided.

Cost per beneficiary
Alignment with policy

Design. [P1] Mitigates migrants’ vulnerability when they first travel. [P3] Supports aspirations of migrants to move abroad in search of employment.

Implementation. [P6] Several actors collaborate to deliver effective PDOS.

  • No feedback loop on the relevance and accuracy of the information is provided through PDOS.
  • PDOS programmes are usually standardized with little attention to customization.
  • There have been concerns over the inclusion of private sector service providers who may have conflicts of interest.
Lessons learned
  • The inclusion of civil society inputs is important (e.g., they contributed to adding a rights perspective to PDOS).
  • PDOS are more effective when supplemented by other information sources such as pre-departure education.
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