19 June 2022 - As the Philippines commemorates the 161st birth anniversary of the National Hero, Dr. Jose P. Rizal, thirteen (13) members of the Filipino community in France graduated from the Ateneo Overseas Filipino Leadership, Innovation, Financial Literacy and Social Entrepreneurship (ALSE-OF LIFE) Program.

Graduates of the ALSE-OF LIFE Program with Ambassador Junever M.  Mahilum-West, Mr. John West, and First Secretary Marge Malang.

The ALSE-OF LIFE is a program launched by the Ateneo School of Government and its partners: Overseas Filipino Society for the Promotion of Economic Security, Inc.; Social Enterprise Development Partnerships, Inc.; and UGAT Foundation, etc., to empower global Filipinos and provide them with basic skills in  leadership, social innovation, financial literacy and social entrepreneurship. The program consists of 12 sessions conducted over 6 months with particular focus on the following: a) empowering overseas Filipinos to view themselves as agents of positive change and transformation; b) improving their economic security, for retirement/reintegration in the Philippines; and c) exploring potentials for changing their livelihood options, either in the host country or back in the Philippines.

Left photo: Ambassador Mahilum-West delivers her remarks at the ALSE-OF LIFE Graduation.  Right photo: Representative of the Ateneo School of Government addresses this year’s Graduates virtually.

Ambassador Junever M. Mahilum-West congratulated all the graduates and thanked them for their invaluable contribution not just to their host country, France, but most importantly, to the Philippines. With their successful completion of the ALSE-OF LIFE Programme, they are pursuing a path of excellence or “magis,” and following the footsteps of Rizal, an Atenean  and a global Filipino himself, in bringing pride to the Philippines.

The Ambassador also extended her appreciation to the organizers and volunteers of ALSE-OF LIFE, noting that the program could be among the Philippines’ concrete contributions to UNESCO’s Transforming Education Summit.

ALSE-OF LIFE in Paris, France started in 2013 and has thus far produced five (5) batches of successful graduates. They are part of the Filipino community in France who continue to enrich  people-to-people exchanges among the Filipinos and French. The Philippines and France celebrate the 75th year of diplomatic relations this year.  END