OVP's 'Bayanihanapbuhay' program to help jobseekers, small businesses

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, September 13) — Days after launching a job listings website to assist displaced Filipino workers, the Office of the Vice President will also open a platform that will help owners of small businesses who were hit by the pandemic.

In her weekly radio show on Sunday, Robredo said they will launch within the week an online platform under the "Bayanihanapbuhay" initiative to provide opportunities for those from the micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) which earlier benefited from her anti-poverty program Angat Buhay.

"Hopefully before the end of this week, ma-launch namin (we will be able to launch it)," she said.

Bayanihanapbuhay, derived from Tagalog words "bayanihan" or solidarity and "hanapbuhay" or livelihood, is the latest program of the OVP intended to help Filipinos find a source of income due to the crisis.

The first leg of Bayanihanapbuhay was launched on Thursday, through a website for Filipinos looking for opportunities online. Job seekers or recruiters may access the platform through the Sikap.ph website.

Employers may also coordinate with them through bayanihanapbuhay@ovp.gov.ph to post their job vacancies.

Robredo said there are already about 4,000 job vacancies in the website to date, available in varying locations such as Metro Manila, Batangas, Bulacan, Cebu and Cavite, among others.

"Hopefully in the coming days, marami pa tayong maging partners para tuluy-tuloy pa ang availability ng trabaho," she said.

[Translation: Hopefully in the coming days, we will have more partners so that there will be more jobs available.]

Robredo said the OVP is also envisioning a separate skills training program for Filipinos who wish to avail of certification courses online, under the third leg of Bayanihan.

The Philippine Statistics Authority recently reported that some 4.6 million Filipinos were out of work in July, ​slipping from an all-time high as lockdown rules were gradually eased.

Robredo's office has been actively coordinating with the private sector to help address the COVID-19 pandemic over the past months.

The OVP previously launched programs which rolled out personal protective equipment (PPEs), free shuttle services, and dormitories for health workers. It also purchased coronavirus test and extraction kits which were delivered to various private and state laboratories.