Our best kept secret
IN a historic landmark document, the leaders of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) signed during the recently held Asean Conference in Manila the Consensus on the Protection and Promotion of the Rights of Migrant Workers that will give the same level of protection to migrant workers as member-states give to their own citizens.
The document protects migrant workers in terms of labor contracts, labor standards, access to legal representation, especially to access to consular representation, something similar to what is enjoyed by citizens of the host countries. It creates a framework for cooperation in safeguarding the interests and welfare of the thousands of migrant workers in the region and strengthens social protection as well as access to justice and health services of the region’s migrant workers, ensuring a humane and fair treatment.
Speaking of International Labor Migration, a common downside is brain drain. Due to the lack of local employment many of our young professionals are forced to seek jobs where the pasture is greener, which in most cases can be found in another foreign land. But to those who decided to “battle it out” here in the homeland, many of our young professionals are taking the initiative to make a difference. One of which is Jefferson G. De Roxas, a young HRM professor from the College of Tourism, Hotel and Travel Industry Management of the Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila (PLM) who wrote to me a beautiful essay, which I am sharing with all of you. In this article Prof. De Roxas shares...
While writing this essay, I suddenly felt a great burden on my shoulder when I realized the extent to which I was called to undertake in assistance to my motherland as a young professional in the field of community-based tourism.
I was suddenly jolted to the magnitude of my role as young citizen of this country, which I did not often ponder since in the past I thought that paying my taxes and working responsibly in the university where I taught was sufficient enough. But when I finally sat down to write this article I then realized ... I could do more!
I guess moments like these are opportunities to look beyond oneself and to appreciate one’s role as a “being for others”.
At first glance, the task may seem to be daunting for one person to undertake but I was likewise consoled by the fact that “one person can make a difference”.
Whenever I would remember the image of a Chinese student standing in front of a tank at Tiananmen Square that inspired a new generation of Chinese Men and Women to the cause of freedom, I am driven to do my part in making this nation great again most especially through community-based tourism.
So when asked, what can I do? I pledge...
L-oyalty. This means patronage to all locally inspired products and tourist attractions within the immediate community where I belong to. How can we invite other nationalities to see and marvel the beauty of our local tourism if I myself do not support it? Moreover, it is likewise incumbent upon me as a teacher to inspire the students under my care to do the same.
E-mpowerment. Give a man a piece of fish and he will eat for a day but teach a man how to fish and he will eat everyday.
As a young professional in the field of Tourism Education, I can utilize my expertise in helping the people in my community to utilize our local tourism in building small and medium scale enterprises to build local livelihood opportunities within the locale.
A-ggressiveness. With all the youthfulness and enthusiasm incumbent upon me as young professional, I pledge to commit myself to aggressively lobby our local government for its continued partnership in harnessing the potential of local community tourism towards the long term development plans of the City to where I likewise belong.
D-evotion. I am in this for the long haul. I will never falter in bringing all these envisioned undertakings into fruition. I do acknowledge that there will be challenges and oppositions along the way but my commitment brings a deep sense of devotion to the task at hand.
E-co Friendliness. Community Tourism must be based on Sustainable Development. In organizing the community to locally promote itself as a distinct tourist destination; I will always be cognizant to do it side-by-side environmental protection. We have an obligation to make sure that the beauty of our natural resources will be available for everyone to see and appreciate not just for our current generation but also for those who would come after us.
R-adicalism. The word though at first glance would seem to be so extremist does not imply as such. Rather it means that I would be innovative in pursuing all available means in achieving the local development of tourism within my community. It means seeking new paradigms and frameworks in the research initiatives I would personally spearhead, and with the support of my university (The Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila) I will do my best to use all these new found knowledge for the common good and betterment of my community.
This is my pledge and my commitment for I am a BEING FOR OTHERS!
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