By: Embassy of the Republic of the Philippines, SEOUL

31 August 2023, Seoul. The Philippine Embassy in Korea and the Commission on Filipinos Overseas (CFO) signed a milestone Memorandum of Understanding on cooperation on 27 August 2023 at the Embassy's Sentro Rizal Hall. The MOU allows for greater cooperation intended to prevent, mitigate, and help facilitate timely intervention for the resolution of cases or incidents of abuse and exploitation of Filipino marriage migrants in South Korea, enhance existing orientation programs, and promote services available to them in Korea and the Philippines.

From top left: Ambassador Dizon-de Vega delivers remarks at the Signing Ceremony; Seoul PE, CFO and Filipino community members at the signing and town hall; Secretary Romulo V. Arugay of the CFO delivers a message; signing of the MOU
In her remarks, Ambassador Dizon-De Vega emphasized that the MOU marks closer cooperation between the Embassy and the CFO in undertaking activities that would safeguard the rights and interests of marriage migrants in ROK. In particular, the mutual participation and support of both parties in the Pre-Departure Orientation Seminar (PDOS) and Post-Arrival Orientation Seminar (PAOS) are meant to ensure that Filipino marriage migrants are able to adapt to a different culture and know what to do in case of distress. Meanwhile, the CFO Chairperson, Secretary Romulo V. Arugay, said that this first MOU signed by the CFO with an Embassy manifests the CFO's commitment to protect marriage migrants and promote unity among Filipino communities all over the world.

Earlier on August 25, the Embassy and the CFO delegation met with the officers of the NamSeoul Center for Migrant Women & Children in Crisis and received an orientation on the role of migrant centers all over ROK in implementing the "Act on the Prevention of Domestic Violence and Protection of Victims." The Center, which opened on 19 April 2021, offers counseling and legal services to aid foreign women who are victims of domestic violence and other forms of abuse. In addition, the Embassy and the CFO Delegation visited a nearby privately-run shelter which is assisting marriage migrants including Filipinos. The Philippine Government delegation provided welfare assistance in the form of household and food items for the wards of the shelter.

On August 26 and 27, the Embassy with the CFO delegation conducted town halls with the United Filipinos in Korea (UFILKOR) and the larger Filipino community in South Korea.

In keeping with the mandate of the signed MOU, the Embassy is expected to hold its first Post-Arrival Orientation Seminar for recently arrived marriage migrants in South Korea in November 2023, in time for the United Nations' International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women. More information shall be made available on the Embassy's website and social media pages. END