I’ve always been humbled by the wonderful attitude and dynamics of Filipino communities outside the Philippines. They have an inherent ability to connect, grow, and thrive, even in the most desolate of places.
But there’s another side to that. From an article about a Filipina nanny in New York:
The label confers status in the Philippines, which receives more money in remittances than any other country except India and China. Since the nineteen-seventies, the government of the Philippines has promoted labor exportation as a strategy for relieving poverty and alleviating the national debt. A tenth of the population now works abroad, supporting nearly half of the country’s households and leaving some nine million Filipino children missing a parent. In the past decade, three-quarters of O.F.W.s have been women; former President Corazon Aquino has praised them as “the heroes of our country’s economy.”