I don’t know what to think of this article posted last night in Korea Times. I have read a fellow Pinay blogger’s sentiments about her experience applying for English teaching jobs here in Korea. She’s married to a Korean and a mother of two. She doesn’t have any issue concerning visa and private language institutions could actually save money by hiring her. The problem is recruiters have been turning her down since she isn’t a native speaker.
“The demand is enormous,” said Kim Seok, who runs an Internet site (www.nannyjob.co.kr) that helps connect parents and jobseekers. He explained that Filipinos are most favored because of their English fluency, but Chinese caregivers are also growing popular with moms wanting to teach their kids Chinese at an early age.
Han In-kyung, manager at Family Care, a job placement agency, added that aside from the language benefits, non-Korean workers are cheaper to hire.
A painful truth that I have learned as a Filipina expat is that foreigners (i.e, non-Filipinos including Koreans and Westerners) usually prejudge us as “3D workers”, “mail-order brides” or “juicy girls”. I don’t blame them for their ignorance. It’s our government that has been directly or indirectly pushing our citizens to work in foreign lands in menial conditions and away from their families. Being a nanny or a 3D worker shouldn’t cause us to lose dignity. However, some of these people working as such are degree holders and probably deserve a better position.
I remember when I registered as a “family” on the website mentioned in the article. I got calls from Filipinas asking me to hire them and one of them is even a licensed public school teacher in the Philippines! I don’t want to sound pessimistic, if there’s one thing I’d like us to be known for in this country, it certainly isn’t as “English-speaking nannies.” Oh well, I even wrote about the website mentioned!