OFWs in Toronto, Canada, are encouraged to renew their OWWA membership to enjoy the benefits and programs provided by OWWA. Also, Filipinos in Toronto who are not yet OWWA members can apply for membership with POLO Toronto or through the Philippine Consulate General (PCG) Toronto Consular Outreach activities as long as meeting the requirements and qualifications. And if you’re wondering about the process, follow the guide below for the OWWA membership application in Toronto, Canada.
It’s important to keep your OWWA membership active so that you can enjoy the benefits and services that OWWA provides.
Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) are abroad to improve their living condition and families. While they experience difficulties living abroad and some from their employers, OFWs surpass such hurdles.
That’s why the Philippine Government with Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) established the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) to promote and protect the welfare of OFWs and their families.
The OWWA membership gives access to its members of varying services and programs and provides OFW members with other support such as legal assistance that they will need if there are issues with their employer.
Furthermore, the OWWA membership serves as an insurance policy for OFWs providing health, disability, and other benefits. The OWWA member’s legal dependents can also enjoy benefits, from education to livelihood programs. Thus, the OWWA membership is beneficial to OFWs and their families.
For OFWs in Toronto, Canada, who are renewing or first-time application for the OWWA membership, here are the following requirements you need to secure for verification:
- Duly accomplished OFW Information Sheet
- Photocopy of Active and Valid Proof of Employment
- Photocopy of Valid Visa and Work Permit
- Original and photocopy of passport (showing the data page)
- OFWs must present a letter of certification from the employer or company, verifying that they are not on the list of terminated, resigned, canceled, or OWWA membership fee of US$25.00 (converted to local currency based on foreign exchange rate)
Whether you’re renewing or applying as a new member of OWWA, there are qualifications criteria you need to meet. The OWWA requires its members to be actively and continuously working and “legal” or “documented” workers who have processed their employment at POEA with valid visas and work permits.
Moreover, OFWs who have obtained permanent residency status in foreign countries with full-time or permanent work and remain Filipino citizens can apply or renew their OWWA membership.
On the other hand, since the institution only accepts actively and continuously working members, the following individuals are not qualified to renew or apply for the OWWA membership, including:
- Due for termination
- Due for cancellation
- No work, No pay
Booking an OWWA Appointment in Toronto
As of writing, the POLO Toronto official website does not have an online appointment system for the OWWA membership application. However, on the POLO Toronto webinar on their Facebook page last April 17, 2021, the application for the OWWA membership is temporary via email.
For now, OFWs cannot visit the POLO Toronto office to apply or renew their OWWA membership. Nonetheless, once the Covid-19 restrictions eased, visiting the POLO Toronto office may be permitted.
Also, OFWs can process their OWWA membership application through PCG Consular Outreach activities. So make sure to check their Facebook page and website for the latest announcements.
Applying for OWWA membership in Toronto
As stated on the POLO Toronto webinar, OFWs can apply or renew their OWWA membership by emailing the requirements to firstname.lastname@example.org.
OFWs need to secure the applicable documents stated above and send them to POLO Toronto for verification.
While there is no appointment system or walk-in applications, for now, there might be in the future, so always check their Facebook page and website for the latest process.
Paying OWWA Membership at Toronto
The OWWA membership fee is payable once the documents are verified the application request is approved. OFWs should wait for the confirmation email before paying the OWWA membership fee and payable through Fund Transfer.
However, if you’re attending the Consular Outreach activities, you can pay the membership fee to the POLO Toronto officer in charge if your application is approved. So to pay the OWWA membership fee with the POLO Toronto office, follow the steps below.
Step by step process of paying the OWWA membership
- Go to POLO Toronto website at http://polotoronto.dole.gov.ph/.
- On the upper screen, hover on Program and Services.
- Choose OWWA Services on the drop-down list.
- Click OWWA Downloadable Form.
- Fill out the required fields on the OFW Information Sheet, including Personal Data, Contract Particulars, and Legal beneficiaries/ Qualified Dependents.
- Scan the OFW Information Sheet and other requirements.
- Email the complete scanned documents to email@example.com.
- Wait for the confirmation of your applicant request sent via email.
- Pay the OWWA membership fee through Bank Transfer.
- Scan the receipt of your payment and email it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- POLO Toronto will inquire about your mailing address. Provide it to claim the official receipt for the OWWA membership fee.
Reminders with OWWA Toronto
Other than complying with the requirements and meeting the qualification criteria for the OWWA membership, here are the following reminders OFWs need to keep in mind during the application with POLO Toronto:
- Make sure that your requirements are complete and the forms accomplished. Applicants who have submitted incomplete requirements will not be processed, resulting in a failed application.
- When scanning your documents, ensure that it is clear and not blurred before you email them to POLO Toronto.
- OFW should not pay the OWWA membership fee without receiving POLO Toronto’s confirmation for their application request.
- After paying the OWWA membership fee, don’t forget to send the scanned receipt to POLO Toronto to confirm your membership.
- Visit the POLO Facebook page and website for inquiries and more details.
Video: OWWA Membership in Toronto
For more details on OWWA in Toronto, Canada, please watch the video below:
As stated on the webinar, the OWWA membership can be accessed at POEA when processing your employment through mandatory enrollment, and OFWs in Toronto who have expired membership can apply for the voluntary application.
The speaker also discussed how OWWA works and programs provided to the OFW members and the difference in benefits granted to active and inactive members.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some common questions and answers about the membership process in POLO Toronto:
1. How to book an appointment with OWWA in Toronto, Canada?
At present, there is no need to book an appointment with POLO Toronto, Canada, for the OWWA membership. In addition, an online appointment system is also not available for now. However, OFWs cannot visit the POLO Toronto office for the time being since the OWWA membership applicant is not processed on-site.
2. How do I renew my OWWA membership in Toronto, Canada?
The current application process for OWWA membership in Toronto, Canada, is performed by sending the scanned documents to email@example.com for verification. Once the application request is approved, the OWWA membership fee is payable through bank transfer. Then, email the scanned payment receipt to confirm your membership with OWWA.
3. How to renew OWWA membership online?
You can renew your membership online via the OWWA mobile app. Download the app on your mobile phone, and sign up for an account. Next, log in to your account and click Renew Membership Here. Fill out the required fields and select the payment methods to pay the OWWA membership fee.
4. How much is OWWA membership in Toronto, Canada?
The OWWA membership fee in Toronto, Canada, is $32.03 or US$25 converted to local currency based on the foreign exchange rate.
5. Can I pay for the OWWA membership online?
Yes, you can pay the OWWA membership fee online. If you renew your membership via the OWWA mobile app, you can pay the fee via an online bank or e-wallet. You can also let your relatives in the Philippines pay the membership fee at the nearest OWWA Regional office or payment centers.
6. How long is OWWA membership valid?
The OWWA membership is only valid for two years, ending on the date of application.
7. Why my OWWA membership is inactive?
Your OWWA membership becomes inactive if the two-year validity has surpassed. Also, your membership becomes inactive if you have an expired work visa or switch to work for a new employer. Since the OWWA membership is only valid for two years under the same employer indicated in the application, changing to a new employer in less than two years will result in inactive membership status.
8. Is OWWA membership mandatory?
Yes, the OWWA membership is mandatory for OFWs who have processed their employment at POEA. Nonetheless, OFWs who acquired jobs in foreign countries can apply for the OWWA membership via voluntary enrollment.
9. Are all OFW member of OWWA?
No, not all OFWs are members of OWWA. The institution has set qualification criteria and requirements for OWWA members. So those who cannot meet the institution’s demands, such as undocumented OFWs, cannot become OWWA members.
10. Who can avail of OWWA benefits?
The OWWA benefits are available by registered or active members. However, inactive members can also avail of OWWA benefits but the programs and services offered are limited.
In summary, the OWWA membership is essential for OFWs to ensure access to different programs, services, and supports, from education and training benefits to financial assistance.
Filipinos in Toronto, Canada, who also wish to become OWWA members may apply through POLO Toronto office, PCG Consular Outreach activities, or via OWWA mobile app by securing the requirements stated above and following the steps for the OWWA membership application.
Thus, if you’re an OFW in Toronto, Canada, make sure to have an active OWWA membership to maximize the benefits accessible by registered members.
POLO-OWWA Toronto, Canada
Opening Hours: 9:00 am-5:00 pm, Monday to Friday
Address: 160 Eglinton Avenue East, Suite 200, Toronto, Ontario M4P 3B5
Telephone Number: (416) 975-8252
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, polotoronto.2019@polo-owwa
Website: http://polotoronto.dole.gov.ph/, https://www.philcongen-toronto.com/
Facebook Page: https://facebook.com/Polotoronto
Google Map Location
Below is the map guide location of the POLO office in Toronto for your reference: