BALIK PROBINSYA: A phenomenological case study of pandemic-related reverse migration from Metro Manila to Leyte province, Philippines

When Metro Manila was placed on lockdown in face of the Covid-19 pandemic, a myriad of issues hurtled to the front of national focus, among them were migrant workers stranded in the country’s capital. In response, the Philippine government formulated the Balik Probinsya program to move individuals back to the provinces and decongest densely populated areas such as Metro Manila.

The Balik Probinsya program is a longterm program of the government intended for Metro Manila residents who want to return to their provinces “for good.” This paper is interested in determining the effects of this reverse migration on the rural areas and the loss of remittances from these returning migrants on the community of origin, especially any adaptation to climate change activities.