ZAMBOANGA CITY – The Employees’ Compensation Commission – Regional Extension Unit 9 has recently inaugurated the Zamboanga Peninsula Chapter of the Occupationally Disabled Workers Association of the Philippines Inc. (ODWAPI) at Tumaga, Zamboanga City.

A set of officers were elected to serve as representatives of persons with work-related disabilities (PWRDs) in Zamboanga Peninsula. The newly elected officers swore to strengthen their business enterprise in the region and promote PWRD empowerment through livelihood opportunities.

The ODWAPI was established in March 2012 by PWRDs who benefitted from the ECC’s KaGabay Program. ODWAPI, Inc. is the first of its kind to be recognized by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the National Council on Disability Affairs (NCDA) as a duly registered association of PWRD.

The ODWAPI aims to empower its member-PWRDs by making them self-sufficient using the livelihood and entrepreneurship skills they acquired through the ECC-KaGabay Program.

The ODWAPI Zamboanga Peninsula Chapter members expressed that they are confident about the association. PWRDs’ hesitations have been replaced by optimism now that they have a support group like ODWAPI.