ILOILO CITY, April 08 (PNA)– Some 350 deserving beneficiaries coming from 10 towns in the First District of Iloilo will avail of the skills training courses of the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) this month.

The program will be under the Special Training for Employment (STEP) which is open to high school students graduated from Alternative Learning System (ALS) and Private Education Student Financial Assistance (PESFA) which is open to all interested applicants 15-years old and above.

Former Iloilo Vice Governor then, Iloilo First District Cong. Oscar Garin said he allotted P 3.5 million to fund this project with P 1 million counterpart from TESDA and travelling allowance from respective Local Government Units (LGU).

Garin said the training will be based per town. He also said trainees will be trained in electrical installation for those from the town of Oton, manicure/pedicure and carpentry for Tigbauan, concrete/masonry surface plastering for Guimbal, cellular phone repair and maintenance for Tubungan, construction asphpalting for Igbaras, wellness massage and plumbing for Miag-ao, and small engine systems and components for San Joaquin.

Garin added trainings will depend on the course that range from 15 days to 33 days.

“Upon completion, these trainees will be given national certificates which they could use to work locally or abroad”, he said during the launching of the program at the Guimbal Gymnasium on April 8, 2014.

TESDA provincial director Toni June Tamayo expressed support to the program. Tamayo said he is willing to give additional fund for the program to give more opportunity for the less fortunate but deserving students in the said district.

Christopher Gestopa, trainee of shielded metal welding course thanked the congressman, Board Member Nimfa Garin, TESDA and Department of Education (DepEd) for facilitating them avail the program.

He admitted that getting into jobs now-adays is very difficult especially when someone has no skill or expertise.

“Education is most powerful weapon that one can use in looking a decent and stable job. This is our greatest weapon against poverty”, he said.

For his part, Miag-ao Mayor Napulan assured his 46 beneficiaries of his support. He said as long as they are responsible enough to complete the training, there is no reason for him not to support them financially. (PNA)