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We are very excited to announce the launch of the BalikbayanBox app for the Blas F. Ople Policy Center and Training Institute, which enables the Filipino community around the world to connect with their families back home this Christmas. The BalikbayanBox app is part of the larger international Google Balikbayan campaign and is Outware’s first app for an overseas client, targeted at an international audience. We are also proud to be exporting quality Australian software development services to Asia, in contrast to the usual trend.

Approximately 12 million people from the Philippines live and work overseas, with over 170,000 living in Australia. Since 2004 the majority of Filipino migrants in Australia are here on skilled visas which now account for more than 64 per cent of all permanent visas granted.

Many people from the Philippines like to send toys, photographs, non-perishable food or household items back to their families in the form of balikbayan boxes. The balikbayan box is a modern manifestation of the general Philippine practice of pasalubong, where travellers within or without the country are culturally expected to bring home gifts to family, friends and colleagues. The boxes are usually sent via container ship, which typically takes several months to arrive.

Sending balikbayan boxes is a traditional way for the Filipino community to connect with their families and loved ones while they’re away from home. Previously, it took many months to fill and send a balikbayan box back to the Philippines. With the new app people can send photos, videos, drawings, YouTube videos, Google Plus posts, thank you letters and much more back to their families, easily and affordably.

The app can be downloaded from the Google Play Store.

To find out more about the Balikbayan campaign, check out:

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