Background of Filipino domestic helpers

The Philippines, formerly known as “Luzon”, is one of the countries in Southeast Asia. It is an archipelago nation with 7107 islands. Approximately 84% of Filipinos are Catholic; 4.9% are Islam; with a few people in other religions Independent and Protestantism.

Tagalog is the major national language and English is the official language. Local education system in the Philippines puts great emphasis on women's home economics; therefore most women have a basic understanding on housework. They have learnt English since primary school, with higher level of education and are smarter. They are friendly, kind, patient, easygoing and adaptable to new environments. Many Filipinos go to bed and get up early. They are also tidy and maintain high level of hygiene. Filipinos are mostly optimistic due to their religious belief. They value kinship and friendships. They are easy to get along with. A typical expression of their good temperament is that they seldom reject others’ requests. Therefore when they say yes or give you an answer, you’d better rephrase your question and ask again, to confirm it is a genuine yes. Rice is their staple food, and they eat rice with pork, beef, mutton, chicken, duck, seafood, or even shrimp paste, milk and mango.

Filipino domestic helpers are detailed minded and they are skilled in taking care of elders and children. They are also good at pet care and gardening. Filipino domestic helpers are honest; very few would commit crimes or steal things because they are the breadwinners of the families. The Philippines has very strict rules for people repatriated back to the country. They are proud of Filipino domestic helpers. If the honesty rating of domestic helper declines; they would be prohibited to export a large number of domestic helpers. The reduced quantity of domestic helpers will have a significant negative impact on its economy. In 2001 and 2002, each year the Philippines received remittance of over eight billion US dollars from exported labours. According to the statistics of Asian Development Bank on 3 August 1999, there are 4.2 million exported labours in the Philippines and it was the largest labour-exporting country in Asia.

The average education level is high school or above; however most of our domestic helpers have obtained a college degree or above. Some have been engaged in nursing, education and clerical work before working in Hong Kong. They are skilled in taking care of elders, children and infants.
Filipinos have higher English proficiency than other Southeast Asian countries. They can help children with their studies. Their lifestyle has been westernized due to the colonization by Spain, United States of America and Japan; which is why Filipino domestic helpers can adjust and adapt to Hong Kong’s lifestyle comfortably.

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