Some one hundred JobStart Trainees recently completed their 10-day online Life Skills Training (LST) at the Datu Lipus Makapandong Cultural Center, this municipality. Each trainee received Php 3,000.00 as stipend and Php 200.00 load allowance for the online sessions.

The Provincial Government of Agusan del Sur (PGAS) through the Public Employment Service Office (PESO), in partnership with the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) Caraga, spearheaded the event. Present during the ceremony were Atty. Joffrey Suyao, Regional Director of DOLE Caraga, Mr. Maximo Magallen Jr., OIC-Provincial Head of DOLE Agusan del Sur, Ms. Divina Lagumbay, PESO Manager of PGAS, and Mr. Ronulfo B. Paler, Provincial Administrator representing Governor Santiago Cane, Jr.

Mr. Magallen welcomed and congratulated the trainees for successfully completing the first phase of the JobStart Program (JSP). Regional Director Suyao emphasized that the LST is geared towards developing and strengthening positive character and personality traits. “Life skills and soft skills are crucial skills that need to be possessed by jobseekers. Hard or technical skills and work experience may not be enough for employers to decide whether an applicant is fit and qualified for the position. Character and personality must be improved and highlighted by every jobseeker to be able to effectively land a job,” RD Suyao shared.

Two trainees shared their experiences in their journey as JobStart trainees. Mr. Alvin Amamangpong shared that “one has to be mindful of their mistakes and learn from them.” Another one is from Mr. James Daya, who expressed how thankful he is for the privilege of being one of the trainees for the program for free.

In his inspirational message, Mr. Paler connected Atty. Suyao’s message of the importance of a person’s character especially at work. Employers look for workers that have a heart for working and delivering their tasks effectively. He also expressed his gratitude to DOLE for its program which can help the employability of the beneficiaries and reduce poverty incidence in the province.

In her closing remarks, Ms. Lagumbay expressed her heartfelt gratitude for the active participation of the trainees until the last day of the LST. She also added that finishing LST is not a guarantee of landing an immediate job. She reiterated that the training will help the trainees improve their character and personality in order to enhance their employability.

A mini job fair was held for the trainees for potential job placement after the LST and to identify who will proceed to Technical Training and Internship.

JobStart is a full cycle employment facilitation service of DOLE which is designed to enhance the employability of at-risk youth to improve their integration into productive employment. (MGT/DOLE Caraga)