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Koh Samui Filipino Teachers May Face No Work Hardships

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Koh Samui Filipino Teachers May Face No Work Hardships | Samui Times
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Filipino teachers in Koh Samui may be joining the rest of Thailand’s educators in struggling financially after schools closed weeks ago.

In Samui, Saint Joseph Koh Samui School and I Aun Nursery both employ Filipino teachers to teach English. Although it is not clear if teachers at these schools are still being paid.

Even though many Filipinos are still technically employed, a large amount are hired under a “no work, no pay” status. This means they have to survive with no income until schools reopen again in July.

Felma Requias, an English teacher at Wat Don Muang School in Bangkok, said she has been out of work since mid-March when the Education Ministry ordered schools across the country to shut down.

The 29-year-old said she previously earned 20,000-25,000 baht a month, which enabled her to make ends meet.

“Now I have no income at all, but I still have to eat, pay rent and utility bills,” she said, adding that another 300 Filipino teachers who work under her agency are also facing the same plight.

Ms Requias said the agency had helped by handing out free “survival packs”. Each package includes instant noodles, canned fish, eggs, cooking oil and other necessities.

“We can also borrow money from the agency if we really need it, but I chose to borrow from my brother instead,” Ms Requias said.

While some Filipinos would rather go home, Ms Requias said she wants to stay and wait for schools to reopen.

“I don’t think the situation in the Philippines will be any better. The rate of Covid-19 infections in my homeland is worse than in Thailand. I want to work here as it’s harder to find a decent paying job in the Philippines,” she said.

A recent survey by PinoyThaiyo, a website run by the Filipino community in Thailand, found 81% of Filipinos here have been affected by the Covid-19 crisis either directly or indirectly. Some 1,047 Filipino workers from different provinces took part.

To alleviate the plight of these workers, a group of Filipinos — the United Filipinos of Thailand (UFT) — launched a campaign to distribute free food packs to them.

The group has been giving out groceries to hundreds of Filipinos since late March, a period when many “Pinoys” were laid off from their jobs.

“We started because we were thinking that Covid here was getting serious,” Jaycee Dilan, a leader of the project told PinoyThaiyo magazine. “We started talking about it and when the number of cases was getting high, we prepared the team.”

Mr Dilan spoke to the former president of UFT, Bing Arias, to get the project rolling, which they called the Covid Food Pack Project. Many of the recipients were teachers who lost their jobs in March.

UFT raised money from companies and other Filipinos in Thailand, which was used to buy the food packs. Each pack consists of five kilogrammes of rice, 10 chicken eggs, a bottle of cooking oil, a few cans of sardines, face masks, packets of noodles and loaves of bread.

Each pack can last for up to three weeks.

Mr Dilan said they will continue to help members of the community and are seeking more donations.

 

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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