After a three-year hiatus, Ateneo School of Government (ASOG) and WIMLER Foundation Hong Kong, launched the Ateneo Leadership and Social Entrepreneurship (ALSE) now called Overseas Filipinos Leadership, Social Innovation, Financial Literacy, and Social Enterprise (ALSE OF-LIFE) on April 30, 2023. Of the 35 participants attending the six-month course, four are permanent residents of Hong Kong. The course in 2023 is being held at the City University of Hong Kong through the Southeast Asia Research Center (SEARC) which runs from April to November.
Edgardo Valenzuela, Adjunct Professor at Ateneo de Manila University, School of Government and co-coordinator of ALSE OF-LIFE program, gave the welcome address in a video message. Prof. Mark Thompson, professor of politics and director of the Southeast Asia Research Center (SEARC) of the City University of Hong Kong, also welcomed the participants through a video message as well.
Vice Consul Jose Angelo D.G. Manuel of the Philippine Consulate General Hong Kong gave an inspiring talk. Others present during the launch were: Calvin Ho of SEARC and WIMLER HK directors: Katherine de Guzman, Luz Tan, Myrna Pama Hill, Manuela D. Lo, and Joji Hui, WIMLER HK volunteer.
In the afternoon, Leila Rispens-Noel, co-founder and director of WIMLER Foundation HK, conducted the first session in Migration and Development.
The training program will enrich our understanding and deepen our appreciation of the concepts of migration and development, social innovation, financial education, entrepreneurship, and leadership.
The course provides:
- Leadership skills training that empowers each overseas Filipino family member and reintegrated OFs to view him/herself as an agent of change and transformation through co-op’s products and services.
- Financial literacy or education, including both financial concepts and skills that the participants can use to improve their economic security, particularly for their retirement.
- Entrepreneurship skills, focused on social entrepreneurship and social innovation so that OFs and OF families can explore their potential for changing their livelihood options, either in the host country or back in the Philippines, instead of relying solely on paid employment.
The hybrid training program will be held two Sundays every month for the next six months. It comes in 12 sessions and will culminate with a Social Enterprise Plan Presentation and graduation.
A mentoring program is in place to help those who are interested in starting productive activities after the course.
ALSE OF-LIFE is one of the Executive Programs of the Ateneo School of Government and carries with it a holistic, excellent, and value-driven brand of education. A roster of highly inspiring professors and speakers from the Ateneo de Manila University and other development partners ensures an enriching and high-impact learning experience.
The ALSE OF-LIFE is a collaboration of the Migration and Development Consortium (MDC) Members composed of OFSPES (Overseas Filipinos’ Society for the Promotion of Economic Security), SEDPI (Social Enterprise Development Partnerships Inc.), and Ugat Foundation.
In Hong Kong, ALSE OF-LIFE is organized by WIMLER HK and ALSE OF-LIFE HK Alumni Association.