ZAMBOANGA CITY – To ensure that employment facilitation services of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) in Zamboanga del Norte province are strengthened, some 66 Public Employment Service Office (PESO) managers, Job Placement Officers (JPO) and staff participated in a 3-day learning session with the Department of Labor and Employment Zamboanga del Norte Field Office on June 7-9, 2023 at the Dakak Park and Beach Resort, Dapitan City.

DOLE Regional Director Albert E. Gutib said that the learning sessions were a result of the members’ agreements during its 1st quarter meeting held last February 2023.

“As one of the most valuable partners of the DOLE, we endeavor to capacitate the PESO Managers and JPOs and provide them with technical assistance relative to the DOLE programs and services they implement within their locality.

Mas malaki ang magiging positive impact nito sa ating mga kababayan kung ang ating mga PESO ay effective and equipped para gawin ang kanilang mga tungkulin. (It will have a greater positive impact on our countrymen if our PESOs are effective and equipped to do their duties.),” said Gutib.

RD Gutib apprised the participants on the current labor force survey where although the employment rate has increased, uderemployment likewise increased. He explained that many of those who are em ployed are dissatisfied with their present jobs. He then called on to the PESO and JPO to focus on this data and find ways and means on how this may be decreased.

In coordination with host local government units – Provincial Government Office of Zamboanga del Norte Province and Dapitan City, participants were oriented on various topics related to employment and DOLE programs and services such as guidelines for Search for Best PESO, workshop on crafting livelihood assistance proposals, First Time Jobseekers Assistance Act, Technical Advisory Visit and Public Employment Information System (PEIS).

Marietta Bellotindos, head of Department of Migrant Workers in Zamboanga City, shared information about conducting Special Recruitment Activity (SRA) which was one of the most requested topics during the previous meeting.

The gathering also provided an avenue for the Zanorte Assocation of PESO Managers and JPO (ZANAPESO-JPO) Officers to discuss important agenda items. Engr. Nonito A. Malacat, President, led the meeting along with other officers.

Engr. Malacat said that the quarterly meetings and learning sessions remain a valuable tool of the PESO and JPO in their duties and responsibilities.

“Through these gatherings, we are able to share best practices among us, network and cross refer jobs and applicants and strengthen camaraderie,” he added.

DOLE Zamboanga del Norte Field Office Provincial Director, Aileen B. Mondejar, shared that as facilitators, it gives the DOLE the opportunity to cascade important issuances and updates in a face-to-face setting.

“We had a really good turnout of attendees for this meeting which is indicative of the PESO and JPO’s determination to achieve the targets and goals set for the year,” Modejar said.

The ZANAPESO-JPO is a Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) registered association composed of PESO managers and JPOs of various local government units and universities/schools in Zamboanga del Norte Province. END