Ma. Lucila Malazar, an overseas Filipino worker based in Al Ain, Abu Dhabi, has become addicted to constant and never-ending self-improvement. Despite all the failures, obstacles, and a series of unfortunate events she had endured in life in the past, she is still optimistic to survive it all.
The 29-year-old sales staff at MK Group has arrived in Al Ain four years ago and has been working in the same company since then. Her main responsibilities include assisting customers with all their needs in the shop. “What I enjoyed about this work is I am surrounded with different people and I always strive to learn new things since I always focus on improving myself by learning new skills on a daily basis and multi-task in various departments,” she said.
To provide her child ‘all the best things in life’, Malazar opted to work overseas. She had no career in the Philippines and considered it as ‘dark times’ as she worked low-paying jobs just to make ends meet.
Problems and making ends meet
Malazar also revealed that she almost died after giving birth at the age of 19.
“Not completing my college degree and becoming a burden to my parents are the things I fully regret,” she said adding that being a solo parent is still one of the things she’s fighting right now. She recalled working every possible job to support her kid’s needs.
During those times, she washed other families’ laundry for hours in exchange for P50 so she could buy biscuits for her child. She has also worked on a farm just to provide her child milk.
“My life in the Philippines was very hard and what motivates me is to be the best mother I can be. I am very grateful to my parents who have been there for me throughout those dark times when I was not able to stand on my own. Those moments and times I will never forget. I promised myself that I will do everything to provide for them,” she added.
On the sidelines, she worked as a receptionist, waitress, office staff, and even as a housemaid, and flyer distributor under a bridge in Metro Manila, just to support her family.
“During this time, I make myself very busy and involved myself in various community works and training to improve myself since I did not finish studying in college,” she said.
When an opportunity to work abroad came, she took it without hesitation, taking into consideration that if she’d work abroad she could earn more money and finally make a living.
While working abroad, she has decided to enroll in the Filipino Institute-Al Ain campus and take the professional diploma caregiver program that lasted for 24 weeks.
“Despite the pandemic and my current financial issues and difficulty in my work schedule, I pushed myself to the limit,” she said.
When ranked in the class, Malazar has landed in the second spot. “I was very happy and I want my child to be inspired and pursue whatever career he wants. It doesn’t matter how old are or your current status is. It’s one of the greatest achievements and this makes my father very happy and excited. I can finally wear a toga,” she added.
The sales staff advised her fellow Filipinos to trust the process and ‘whatever you achieve, do it with patience, determination, and hard work.’