OWWA CPDEP Program – How to Apply

Pre-Departure Education Program (CPDEP) is a specialized training program provided by the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) for domestic workers or Household Service Workers (HSWs) who are preparing to work overseas. It serves as an alternative to the Pre-Departure Orientation Seminar (PDOS) specifically tailored to meet the unique needs and challenges faced by domestic workers.

Unlike PDOS, which is a shorter orientation seminar, CPDEP is a more extensive and comprehensive training program. It typically lasts for a mandatory two to six days and is conducted in a live-in format, meaning the participants stay at a designated facility throughout the duration of the training. This format allows for an immersive learning experience and facilitates a more thorough understanding of the topics covered.

owwa CPDEP program consists of several modules that cover various aspects essential for domestic workers in adapting to their new working environment. These modules often include:

  1. Basic language instruction: This module focuses on providing domestic workers with basic language skills relevant to the country they will be working in. It helps them communicate effectively with their employers and co-workers, enabling smoother integration into the local culture.
  2. Cultural familiarization: Understanding the cultural norms, traditions, and practices of the host country is crucial for domestic workers. This module aims to familiarize them with the local customs, social etiquette, and cultural sensitivities to ensure better integration into the new community.
  3. Stress management: Working abroad can be mentally and emotionally challenging, particularly for domestic workers who may face isolation or homesickness. This module equips them with coping mechanisms, stress management techniques, and strategies for maintaining their overall well-being while working overseas.

The CPDEP aims to enhance the overall preparedness and competency of domestic workers before they embark on their overseas employment journey. By providing a more comprehensive training program, it helps to equip them with the necessary skills, knowledge, and mindset required for a successful and fulfilling work experience abroad.


Pre-Departure Education Programs (CPDEP) is a mandatory training program offered by the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) to vulnerable groups of household service workers (HSWs) and domestic workers (DWs) in the Philippines. This program aims to address the needs of these workers who are about to leave the country for employment abroad.

The CPDEP is typically a two- to six-day live-in orientation seminar that HSWs and DWs must complete before they can depart for their foreign job placements. The training is specifically designed to equip them with the necessary knowledge and skills to navigate the challenges they may encounter in their destination countries, such as language barriers and cultural differences.

The main objective of the CPDEP is to prepare HSWs and DWs for their new jobs in foreign countries where the culture, customs, traditions, and languages may be vastly different from their own. It provides them with essential information about work standards, the profile of the host country, the different stages of an overseas worker’s life abroad, health and safety tips, travel guidelines, airport procedures, and available government programs and service

Components of the OWWA CPDEP

There are three parts to the OWWA CPDEP: the Language Seminar, Culture Familiarization Seminar, and the Stress Management Seminar.

Basic Language Training

  • English
  • Spanish
  • Mandarin
  • Japanese
  • Korean
  • French
  • German
  • Italian
  • Portuguese

The Language and Culture Familiarization Seminar aims to equip Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) with the necessary language skills to communicate effectively in their host countries. The seminar not only focuses on language learning but also provides cultural insights and awareness to help OFWs adapt to their new environments. By expanding the language courses beyond Arabic, the program recognizes the diversity of destinations for OFWs and the importance of language proficiency in various regions around the world.

  • Arabic – Three (3) days training
  • Cantonese – Three (3) days training
  • Hebrew – Three (3) days training
  • Italian – Three (3) days training
  • Mandarin – Six (6) days training

Cultural Acquaintance or Familiarization Seminar

The Cultural Familiarization Seminar is an additional training provided to Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) as part of the Comprehensive Pre-Departure Education Program (CPDEP). This training aims to familiarize OFWs, particularly those working as Household Service Workers (HSWs) and Domestic Workers (DWs), with the culture and traditions of their host country. By gaining insights into the host country’s culture, OFWs can develop a better understanding of their hosts and employers, which in turn helps them communicate more effectively with the locals.

The primary objective of the cultural familiarization seminar is to equip OFWs with the necessary knowledge and skills to navigate potential cultural obstacles they may encounter while working abroad. By learning about the host country’s cultural norms, practices, cuisine, art forms, and entertainment, OFWs can adapt to their new environment more easily and foster positive relationships with the local community.

Moreover, the seminar provides a brief introduction to the host country’s history and addresses the concept of culture shock. OFWs are informed about the potential challenges they might face due to differences in language, customs, and social norms. They are also educated on the adjustments required to effectively interact with the locals, helping them integrate into the society more smoothly.

Overall, the Cultural Familiarization Seminar serves as a valuable preparation tool for OFWs, enabling them to enhance their understanding of the host country’s culture, communicate effectively, and overcome potential cultural barriers they may encounter during their employment overseas.

Stress Management Seminar

The Stress Management Seminar offered by OWWA (Overseas Workers Welfare Administration) under the CPDEP (Comprehensive Pre-Departure Education Program) is a half-day training program aimed at providing participants with knowledge about the causes and effects of stress. The primary objective of the seminar is to equip OFWs (Overseas Filipino Workers) with the necessary tools to manage stress effectively, both physically and mentally, while working in a foreign country.

The seminar is designed to address the unique challenges and demands faced by OFWs, who often experience high levels of stress due to factors such as culture shock, language barriers, homesickness, and work-related pressures. By understanding the causes and effects of stress, participants can develop a better understanding of their own experiences and learn practical strategies to cope with and alleviate stress.

The seminar incorporates a combination of established stress coping techniques that have been proven effective for OFWs, as well as new coping mechanisms that participants have developed based on their personal experiences. The training sessions provide a platform for participants to share their own strategies and learn from one another, creating a supportive environment for collective growth and learning.

In addition, the seminar covers specific training modules tailored for household service workers, who often face unique stressors in their line of work. These modules focus on empowering the workers to develop their own coping mechanisms, enabling them to navigate the challenges of their roles more effectively. By building resilience and acquiring new coping skills, household service workers can enhance their overall well-being and job satisfaction.

Overall, the Stress Management Seminar offered by OWWA aims to empower OFWs with the necessary knowledge and skills to manage stress effectively while working abroad. By equipping participants with tools for stress management, the seminar contributes to their overall well-being and helps them thrive in their overseas employment.


Pre-Departure Education Program (CPDEP) offers several benefits to Household Service Workers (HSWs) who participate in it. These benefits are designed to assist HSWs in their transition to a new job and life in a foreign country. Here are some of the perks of joining the mandatory CPDEP:

  1. Orientation on fundamental needs: HSWs receive focused training that covers their basic needs and essential information, rather than overwhelming them with specific details. This ensures that they have a solid foundation of knowledge and understanding as they embark on their journey.
  2. Country-specific and skill-specific training: HSWs undergo training that is tailored to the country they will be working in and the specific skills required for their job. This training provides them with relevant and credible information that will help them adapt to their new workplace more effectively.
  3. Dealing with challenging work environments: HSWs are equipped with the knowledge and skills to handle various challenges that they may encounter in international households. This includes addressing difficult work environments and atmospheres commonly found in such settings. The training aims to prepare them for different situations and ensures they are better equipped to manage them.
  4. Health and security needs: The CPDEP focuses on addressing the health and security needs of vulnerable populations, which includes HSWs. By providing comprehensive education, the program helps ensure that HSWs have a better understanding of their rights, safety measures, and resources available to them. This leads to improved support and protection for HSWs in their host country.
  5. Assisting with job adjustment: One of the key benefits of the CPDEP is helping HSWs adjust to their new jobs. The program aims to support HSWs during the challenging initial six months of their employment in the host country. By providing them with the necessary knowledge and skills, the CPDEP helps HSWs navigate their new roles and responsibilities more effectively.
  6. Better prepared for unfamiliar work environments: The CPDEP equips HSWs with the tools to handle the challenges that may arise in unfamiliar international households. By receiving country-specific and skill-specific training, HSWs are better prepared to adapt to the work environment and atmosphere they may encounter, which contributes to their overall success and well-being.

CPDEP Qualifications

Some of the most basic qualifications that OFWs and HSWs need to satisfy in order to join the mandatory CPDEP seminar include being at least one the following:

For Filipinos who are leaving the Philippines (if you have been issued an immigrant visa):

  • Adults between ages 20 to 59
  • Children aged 13 to 19 years old
  • Minors under the age of 13 and adults over the age of 59 are ineligible to take CPDEP

Requirements When Taking OWWA CPDEP

Like any other OWWA programs, the OWWA Comprehensive Pre-Departure Education Programs (CPDEP) for HSWs comes with certain documentary requirements which includes the following:

  1. Duly completed registration form: You need to fill out the registration form provided by the relevant authority or organization.
  2. Original and photocopy of Valid Passport: You need to submit your valid passport issued by the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA). It should be valid for at least six months before the date of travel.
  3. Any one (1) of the following valid photo ID: You must provide one valid photo identification document from the list below:
    • Alien Certificate of Registration (ARC I-Card)
    • Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) ID
    • Barangay Clearance / Certificate
    • Certification from the National Council for the Welfare of Disabled Persons (NCWDP)
    • Company / Office ID, Student’s ID, or School ID
    • Consular ID
    • Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) ID
    • Driver’s license
    • Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) E-card
    • Home Development Mutual Fund (HMDF) or PAG-IBIG ID
    • Marriage Certificate (NSO Authenticated)
    • National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) Clearance
    • National Statistics Office (NSO) / Birth Certificate
    • Overseas Filipino Workers (OFW) ID
    • Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) ID
    • Permit to Carry Firearms
    • PhilHealth Identification Card (PIC)
    • Philippine National Police (PNP) ID
    • Philippines Overseas Employment Association (POEA) ID
    • Police Clearance
    • Postal ID
    • Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) ID
    • PRA Special Resident Retiree Visa (SRRV) ID
    • Seaman’s Book
    • Senior Citizen’s ID Card
    • Social Security System (SSS) ID
    • Tax Identification Number (TIN) ID
    • Unified Multi-Purpose ID (UMID)
    • Voter’s ID
  4. Original and photocopy of Working Visa: You need to provide the original and photocopy of your working visa issued by the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) or the concerned embassy.
  5. Original Employment Contract: You must submit the original employment contract, which should be verified by the Philippine Overseas Labor Office (POLO) in the host country where you will be working. The contract can be issued by POLO or the Department of Migrant Workers (DMW), formerly known as POEA.
  6. Certificate of Attendance ng Pre-Departure Orientation Seminar (PDOS): You should obtain a certificate of attendance for the Pre-Departure Orientation Seminar (PDOS) issued by the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) or any accredited PDOS provider.
  7. Endorsement letter: You need to provide an endorsement letter from the recruitment agency or the OWWA Regional Welfare Office (RWO) where you obtained the PDOS certification. The content of the endorsement letter may vary depending on whether you are an agency hire or a name-hire.
  8. $25 (payment for OWWA membership fee): You are required to pay $25 as the OWWA membership fee.
  9. CPDEP attendance: It is mentioned in the list, but without further context, it is unclear what CPDEP stands for. Please provide additional information if you have it.

Documentary requirements specific to a country:

The following documentary requirements are needed for CPDEP. However, these documents may vary as these are specific to the country where the HSWs will be working:

  • For US-bound emigrants: Summary of immigrant data (except for K visa holders)
  • For workers going to Italy: Nulla Osta
  • For emigrants going to Canada: Confirmation of Permanent Residence (COPR) (must not be torn or signed before departure)
  • For workers heading to Australia: A letter of approval for a Work to Residence visa – Visa Grant Notification Letter
  • For emigrants going to New Zealand: A letter of approval for a Work to Residence visa is required.
  • For Japanese emigrants: Certificate of Eligibility (COE)

CPDEP  Application Procedures

There are two different ways of availing the Comprehensive Pre-Departure Education Program for Household Service Workers (CPDEP for HSWs) and each comes with a separate set of procedures that household workers or domestic workers need to follow to get in on the program and avail the service.

Personal/ Face-to-face Comprehensive Pre-Departure Education Program (CPDEP)

For personal of face-to-face CFO CPDEP held at the OWWA Office:

To secure an appointment at the nearest OWWA Regional Welfare Office (RWO) and complete the enrollment process, you can follow the steps below:

  1. Visit the OWWA website (appointment.owwa.gov.ph) or use the OWWA Mobile App, both of which have an appointment scheduler.
  2. Use the appointment scheduler to select a suitable date and time for your appointment at the nearest OWWA RWO. Make sure to choose a location closest to your permanent address.
  3. On the selected date of the appointment, visit the chosen OWWA RWO. Locate the CPDEP Staff at the Registration Desk.
  4. Fill out the Enrollments Form provided by the CPDEP Staff. Ensure that you have all the required documentary requirements with you and submit them along with the form. This step usually takes about 5 minutes.
  5. After submitting the form and required documents, request the CPDEP Staff for the Enrollment Card. The staff will provide you with the card, which will contain the schedule and venue for your training. This step typically takes about 10 minutes.
  6. Attend the scheduled training conducted by the CPDEP Resource Speaker. The training will focus on Language Training and Culture Familiarization. Make sure to go to the designated training venue at the specified time mentioned on your Enrollment Card.
  7. At the end of the seminar/training, you can obtain the Certificate of Attendance. This certificate will serve as proof that you have completed the training. The process of obtaining the certificate usually takes around 15 to 30 minutes.

Online Comprehensive Pre-Departure Education Program (CPDEP)

There’s also an option for Online Registration for the Comprehensive Pre-Departure Education Program for Household Service Workers (CPDEP for HSWs). You will need to use a designated email address for the enrollment of trainees, and appointment via phone calls for the release of Certificate of Attendance (COAs).

To do so, just follow these instructions:

  • Refer to the public notice.
  • Visit www.cfo.gov.ph.
  • Fill out all preliminary questions to determine whether you need to attend the PDOS or the CPDEP orientation seminar.

Below are some of the preliminary questions included in the page:

  • How do you know your petitioner/sponsor?
  • What is the name of your destination country?
  • What is the type/category/classification of your visa?
  • Once done, key in your email address and click the submit button.
  • Look for a confirmation letter in your inbox (including the SPAM folder).
  • Click “Confirm Email” and fill out the “personal information” tab with your information.
  • The personal information tab will then ask you to provide the following information:
    • Last Name
    • First Name
    • Middle Name
    • Suffix
    • Birthdate
    • Sex
    • Civil Status
  • Complete your online registration by clicking “proceed to registration”
  • Upload clear and most recent picture.
  • You can download or print your barcoded confirmation. If printed, you need to bring this along with your other requirements to CFO on your schedule date.

Important Reminders

some important reminders about the OWWA CPDEP program for household service workers and domestic workers:

  1. HSWs or DWs who successfully complete the CPDEP training are awarded a Certificate of Completion.
  2. The Certificate of Completion, along with all other required documents, must be submitted to the Department of Migrant Workers (DMW), formerly known as POEA (Philippine Overseas Employment Administration), for processing.
  3. When departing the country, the Certificate of Completion must be presented to the authorities at the airport.
  4. To avoid unnecessary delays or difficulties at the airport, it is crucial to keep all your documents well-organized and complete in one easily accessible location.
  5. Only CPDEP applications that meet all the registration criteria will be approved by the Commission on Filipinos Overseas (CFO).

Understanding CPDEP Better: Live CPDEP Training

To understand the goals and processes of availing the CPDEP better,


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Here are some common questions and answers that people frequently ask about the CPDEP OWWA Program:

1. Is PDOS and CPDEP the same?

No. While the two are similar in nature and end-goal, CPDEP is exclusively designed for Household Service Workers (HSWs) or Domestic Workers (DWs) who are about to leave the country.

2. Where should I take this program, in the Philippines or in my new host country?

As indicated by the program name, it is a mandatory “Pre-Departure” training which means it has to be completed by the HSWs and DWs in the Philippines, before leaving the country for their new work.

3. How long does the CPDEP program last?

It lasts for approximately two (2) to six (6) days.

4. Is the CPDEP program free? If not, how much does it cost?

Yes. CPDEP is completely free. If there’s any fee to be paid, the agency should be the one to pay for it.

5. Can I get the CPDEP scheduled online?

Yes, you may register and book your schedule online via the Commission on Filipinos Overseas (CFO) website .

6. Do I need to pay a registration fee for taking CPDEP?

No. There is no registration fee to be paid to take the mandatory CPDEP orientation-seminar.

7. Is it necessary to register at CPDEP?

Yes. Even if you are among the exempted ones, you will still need to register for the CPDEP orientation seminar as it is one of the mandatory requirements that you will need to present before you are allowed to leave the country for your new host country.

8. What language courses does OWWA currently offer?

At present, OWWA offers courses in substantial linguistics (alphabet), basic household vocabulary instruction, history, faith, and judicial system in the Arabic, Cantonese, Hebrew, Italian, and Mandarin languages. They also offer, as part of CPDEP, lessons on all the prohibitions that were established, and included them in the training to make the learners more aware and prepared. The learners also get a pronunciation guide, along with a guide that includes greetings and apologies, numerals and currencies, calendar, time, customs, and values as part of the course.

9. In case I need more information, where can I find the CFO Offices?

If you need more information on where you can find the CFO offices, then here’s the contact information for each one:

CFO-MANILA (Main Office)

Office Address: Citigold Center, 1345 Pres. Quirino Avenue corner Osmeña Highway, Manila, Philippines 1007

Tel. No.: (02) 552-4700

Fax No.: (02) 561-8332

Email address: emailinfo@cfo.gov.ph


Office Address: Ground floor, K&J Building, #4 Don Julio Llorente St., Capitol Site, Cebu City 6000

Telefax. No.: (632) 255-5253

Email address: emailcfocebu@cfo.gov.ph


Office Address: 5th floor, AMQ Building, Lakandula St. corner, Dacudao Ave., Agdao, Davao City

Tel. No.: (+6382) 228-2432

Email address: emailinfo@cfo.gov.ph

Note that all CFO offices keep the following operating hours:

Monday to Thursday, 7:00 AM – 5:00 PM (Except Holidays)

For other information, you may also reach out to the CFO via the following:

Tel. No.:  (02) 8552-4700

Fax No.:  (02) 8561-8332

Email Address:  info@cfo.gov.ph

Facebook Page:  http://facebook.com/CFOGovPH


The Comprehensive Pre-Departure Education Program (CPDEP) for Household Service Workers (HSWs) is a program launched by the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) to provide guidance and support to HSWs before they leave for their host countries.OWWA CPDEP Program Unlike other OWWA projects, the CPDEP serves as a preventive measure by equipping HSWs with the necessary skills and knowledge to protect themselves while working abroad.

The CPDEP is a mandatory seminar that HSWs and Domestic Workers (DWs) must attend before they are permitted to leave for their employment. It serves as a training program to educate them about potential challenges they may face in their new workplace and helps them adapt to the cultural and language barriers they might encounter. By providing country-specific and skill-specific training, the program prepares HSWs to handle various situations and facilitates their adjustment to the host country.

The program covers a wide range of topics, including language training, cultural familiarization, stress management, culture shock, traditions, customs, and information about available government programs and services. By offering such comprehensive training, the CPDEP ensures that HSWs are well-informed and better equipped to face the challenges that come with working abroad. It also focuses on providing specific skill-based training instead of generalized information, ensuring that the program is practical and beneficial for the HSWs.

The primary objective of the CPDEP is to assist HSWs in managing their first six to twelve months in the host country, which is a critical period for adjustment. The program aims to provide proper orientation to the workers so that they are prepared to deal with the changes and potential stressors they may encounter. By teaching them effective communication with locals and stress management techniques, the CPDEP empowers HSWs to navigate their new surroundings confidently.

Overall, the OWWA CPDEP for HSWs serves as a preventive and preparatory measure, helping migrant workers protect themselves and cope with the challenges they may face while working abroad. By providing specialized training and comprehensive information, the program aims to support HSWs throughout their journey and contribute to their overall well-being and success.

Contact Information

If, for instance, you feel the need to reach out to OWWA to learn more about the OWWA CPDEP or any other other OWWA Pre-Departure Education Programs, then you might find the following contact information useful:

Overseas Workers Welfare Association (OWWA)

Office Address: F.B. Harrison St, Pasay, Metro Manila

Tel. No.: 8891-7601 to 24

OWWA hotline number: 1348, (02) 1348 (Regional), (+632) 1348 (International)

OWWA Email Address: owwacares@owwa.gov.ph, commandcenter@dole.gov.ph

OWWA Facebook page: https://web.facebook.com/OWWAofficial

OWWA website: https://owwa.gov.ph/

You may also download and install the OWWA Mobile App from either Google Play Store or Apple Store so you can stay updated on the latest OWWA projects and programs created specifically for OWWA member Filipino OFWs who wish to keep themselves abreast with the OWWA initiatives. You may also contact the nearest OWWA Regional Welfare Office (RWO) or any of their Satellite Offices through their Facebook pages for more comprehensive information.

Some other contact information you can call include:

Cellular Numbers: (Smart) 09615958438, (Globe) 09052535680

Landline Numbers: (02) 85680986, (02) 85680984, (02) 85273476, (02) 85273525, (02) 85272115, (02) 53096605, (02) 83538067

DOLE-Bureau of Local Employment (BLE) – (02) 8527-2539

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