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A couple of weeks ago, I shared in this column (entitled Filipino Service at its Best) what we have seen during our annual summer trip (which started as a cruise from Turkey to Venice), how Filipinos working abroad excel in service.
It feels good to end our summer family trip together as a clan of 55 travelling together with no fights and arguments, and to have the chance to be with our father, who, at the age of 82, just recently went through an operation. It was a hectic trip, having gone also to see the canonization of two popes in Rome. Finally my own trip with my wife and kids for a detour in London.
Business obligations, attending the Standard Chartered conference in London to promote our company RFM and the Philippines, and most importantly â€“ to bring my daughter whose birthday wish as she turned 7 a couple of months back is to watch Katy Perryâ€™s concert and the boy band One Direction. Something I donâ€™t really look forward to, but something I guess will make her and her other sisters happy. We did go to Katy Perryâ€™s concert and many parents were dragged by their children, but it was a great concert and great bonding moment with our children. We are yet to see One Direction. For this one I was warned by many to be prepared with ear plugs because of all the teeny boppers screaming and shouting their lungs out.
I guess as parents, we try to go out of our way to spend quality time with our children. While our clan is quite close and maintains this relationship to weekly Sunday gatherings and local and foreign trips, memories are what we can leave behind and hopefully our children will value the importance of family.
This, today, is the Philippinesâ€™ greatest strength, the family ties, which is why OFWs have never failed to send remittances back home. During the conference, one fund manager shared with me her story about her house staff who is a Filipina who has 23 nephews and nieces. She wonders why her Filipina helper would continue to send money to her family back home and not keep it all for herself. I explained that the Philippines is a Catholic country, and while many poor families cannot afford to properly raise many children, they continue to have many children and that the church is fighting the RH Bill that was passed into law. With too many people in the labor force, most find more opportunities to work abroad. Human resources have become the countryâ€™s greatest and biggest asset. To a great extent, the OFW and the labor intensive-BPO industry have become major sources of dollar revenues.
The family as a unit in Philippine society has remained solid. The respect for elders and love for family have been passed on through many generations and today has remained the greatest values instilled in many Filipinos. These continue to be the greatest motivation as to why they sacrifice to work abroad and continue to remit money back home.
On the road while touring, I met my childhood hero, Batman. I guess everyone is inspired by some super heroes during our childhood days. Some of the super heroes teach the right values. I guess looking now; the â€˜cape crusader valuesâ€™ have led us to do Go Negosyo together with the other entrepreneurs, to rescue people from poverty by inspiring, mentoring and guiding the small entrepreneurs.
In our radio show, we invited mompreneur Mary Joy Abaquin. She has co-authored a book with Go Negosyo entitled Eight Simple Secrets in Raising Entrepreneurs. She owns the Multiple Intelligence International School and has grown this school to guide kids to identify their passion, intelligence and skills and focus on developing it. They teach the kids how to convert these passion and skills into entrepreneurship at a young age. She shares the same vision we have in Go Negosyo as an active mentor as well. She believes that values are formed at an early age.
â€œAll children have talents, and those need not only be math or science intelligence, but these could be in music, sports, interpersonal, graphic or spatial, designs, intra-personal or inter-personal developmentâ€ said Mary Joy. Intelligence means the ability to problem solve and innovate on things to give solutions thus, kidâ€™s empowerment should be focused on the solution that they can make.
She encourages the community to be part of their movement in raising children who can be leaders of the community; reaching out to partners and experts who can act as mentors and schools as active participants in the community.
Abaquin shared insightful tips on raising children to be entrepreneurial. She highlighted Interest plus Intelligence equals Idea. First is to find the Intelligence and identify what area; second is to develop the interest in that field and generate ideas out of those strengths. As parents, we should give 3 Es: Exposure, Experts, and Experience. Exposing children to the things that interest them, tapping experts that will serve as role models and mentors for the kids and letting them learn through expanded experience.
Learning the culture of respect and values are important in teaching the kids to become better individuals. One should be a good example in teaching children. She said â€œModelling for your kids that you are passionate about something, and then they too can be passionate about something.â€ Her advice to everyone is to look for your real purpose and passion in life.
The best way to push forward change is to teach our children good values and shape their character as good citizens of our nation.