Category: Filipino Community

How we celebrate the Philippine Independence Day in Denmark?

How we celebrate the Philippine Independence Day in Denmark?

The Babaylanes after decorating the stage for the Independence Day in .Group picture during the well attended Independence Day in Odense last JUne 2, 2012

Every year during the month of June Filipinos around the world gather together and celebrate the Philippine Independence Day. When I was in the Philippines we don’t really celebrate it locally but in the cities and in the capital region there are programs commemorating this special day. It is by the way a non working holiday so people go to the mall or plaza to watch the programs usually which usually starts with flag ceremony with the attendance of government officials and parade in the morning and in the afternoon there are programs consisting of different cultural show with special guests consisting of celebrities – politicians,actors, actresses and singers.

I was once asked what so interesting about and why we celebrate it? Is it just our excuse to party? My answer was it is important for us Filipinos because we were colonized more than 300 years from 1521 -1898 by Spain it is just right to commemorate our freedom every year.

Party? yes of course we love to party. It is in our culture even before the Spanish time I further explain to that danish guy that the Filipinos by nature are used to gather around and celebrate any events by singing, dancing, joking around, sharing food etc. We always want to share joy or even grief together with friends and guests. We love funfare, fiestas or festivities from month of May almost all towns have their fiesta honoring their patron Saints and to add culminating the May Flower Festival is the the Santacruzan parade.  My theory is this our way to cope with the long years of oppression during the old times and the poverty in the modern times. The Filipinos also are very hospitable people always want to please the visitors and the colonizers so they always present fantastic show to entertain guests and enjoy the moment and forget about their problems. This is why we don’t get pleasure in just eating in some parties there should be entertainment, that’s why the Magic Karaoke becomes popular but that’s another story.

 

Group picture during the well attended Independence Day in Odense.

Just to give a little background, thePhilippine Declaration of Independence Day occurred 114 years ago on june 12, 1898 to be exact in the Philippines by General Emilio Aguinaldo who wast he first Republican President. But the declaration was short-lived as Spain ceded the Philippines to the Americans through the Treaty of Paris by accepting 20 million US dollar. The Americans did not recognize the Philippine Republic until after the world War 2 when they declared the Philippine Independence on July 4, 1946 but it was later changed by Pres. Diosdado Macapagal on August 4, 1968 through signing a new law called Republic Act No.4166I . Since then the 4th of July became FIL-AM friendship Day.

 

The establishement of FILCOM DENMARK

I don’t know how the Filipinos celebrate the Independence Day before I came here but during the past 10 years it just few Filipino organization who organized the event. I think 2009 they were different celebrations in Denmark in different places but not as grand as in Norway or Holland but it was limited since it is always in a 4 star Hotel.

The year 2010 the then Ambassador Elizabeth Buensuceso asked for a meeting  asking the different organizations to join forces in celebrating the Independence Day  and that was the year the FILCOM DK was born. The first united Independence Day in Copenhagen was a succesful event where Filipinos and Danish friends from all walks of life came, joined the parade in the streets of Copenhagen and watched the fantastic show. Unfortunately I was in the Philippines on vacation and was also amazed how they became nationalistic as most establishment display the Phi. Flag. It was later that I found out that from 28th of May to June 30 were designated as flay days. Another reason of “proud to be Pinoy attitude “was that hope and gratitude President  Benigno “PNOY” Aquino won the presidential Election that year. Here is a short video of the 2010 Filcom Denmark’s Independence Day.

As I live in Denmark I became aware of my Filipino roots and I long to join the Independence Day celebration but the problem is it is always in the hotel and not all can afford to join. Whenever I see how the Filipino community in the Netherlands, London and Oslo where they do it in a big park I wonder if we can do it here in Denmark? I longed for an event without the fancy gowns, stars, important people and beauty contest and which focus away the real motive of celebrating the Independence Day. I dreamed that every guests especially 2nd generation Filipinos will learn more about the Philippines road to Freedom and become proud of their heritage .

Like our road to freedom from the colonizer, uniting the different organizations might take longer time but I believe as a Filipino even we’re donning different nationalities, we have the obligation to celebrate this special day to give thanks to our forefathers who fought and sacrifice their lives to achieve the freedom we have the privilege to enjoy right now. We don’t need any famous stars, beauty queens, world-class entertainers to come and be proud to be Filipinos. We should impart to our children our roots and  our culture that makes as unique and be proud as Filipino no matter what your status. But of course I always encourage Filipinos to attend such gatherings no matter what organizations and groups they belong as it is only done  once a year to. Party and disco is only a plus but the feeling of together as Filipinos is the most important especially when you are away from home, the Philippines.

 

Posing with Babaylan Dancers during Filcom DK Independedence Day 2011

I support FILCOM DK and salute all the active committee members cause they sacrifice their precious time to bring the Independence Day every year for 3 years to every Filipino with no entrance. I also salute the sponsors,contributors, the performers who do it for free and for our mother land. It might not be grand as the other celebrations in other parts of the world but having and event where Filipinos in Denmark old and new, residents and aupairs meet is a privilege.

I only started to join the celebration last year. The venue was not that big so it was a 2 day event but still lots of people came and watched the cultural show. I even did present the evolution of the Philippine Flag and the protocol in displaying it which is always not in the right way. The Philippine flag is unique cause it can indicate indicate if the Philippines is in state of war when the red field is displayed above the blue, or on the observer’s left when the flag is displayed vertically. We should always remember this as we display the flag during special events especially during the Independence Day celebration.

Proper display of PHL flag

Here is an announcement from FILCOM DENMARK

INVITATION TO ATTEND THE 114TH INDEPENDENCE CELEBRATION IN COPENHAGEN

FILCOM Denmark will celebrate the Philippines 114th Independence Day in Copenhagen on
Saturday, 9 June 2012.
11:00-18:00 Fiesta 19:00-01:00 Free Disco
 Skottegårdsskolen, Saltværksvej 63
FREE ENTRANCE

We encourage Filipinos and Danes to come and join us wearing Filipino attire and bring Filipino Flag and your Filipino Spirit in remembering our 114th Independence Day as we will have a parade in the streets near the venue. Parade will start at 12.30.

There is no entrance fee but we encourage all to buy a raffle ticket for 25 dkk to win Ipad 2 with 16 GB, basket of goods, dinner for two and a lots of consolication prizes. You can buy raffle tickets at the entrance.

FILCOM DK has prepared exciting program: Parade, Film Showing, Parlor games for children, Cultural Show, singing, dancing, live band, FILCOM DK logo competition, kids game and raffle drawing.

Food court with tasty Filipino Culinary Delights,Tiangge (Dry Good stalls) and Softdrinks/Bar at reasonable prices.

DISCO! DISCO! DISCO! from KL.19

PLUS+++++

To those who watch the EURO 2012 FOOTBALL CHAMPIONSHIPS

you can watch LIVE in a big screen the Football match between

DENMARK Vs. HOLLAND

FILCOM DK (Filipino Community in Denmark) was established 3 years ago with the main objective is to unite Filipinos who belong to different organizations, religous group, political parties or Filipinos from different regions in the Philippines to celebrate the Philippines Independence Day and Christmas every year. It is a Non profit Organization and everybody is welcome to join even as individual. There is no leader or chairperson in Filcom DK but all organization or individual are represented in the working committe.

Mabuhay ang FILCOM Denmark

Gala Night and Fiesta to celebrate 114th Philippine Independece in Odense Denmark

WHAT: Philippine Independence Day Event in Odense,
WHEN: June 2
WHERE: Marienlystcenter
Windelsvej 138
5000 Odense C

Raffle ticket for adults — 200kr (inclusive food and raffle tickets ):
1st prize 1 Apple Ipad worth 3k
2nd prize worth 2k
3rd worth 1k

Best in costume:
1st 1k
2nd 500kr
3rd 300 kr

Children’s ticket — 100 kr (foods and raffle ticket)
1st prize 500kr
2nd 300kr
3rd 200kr

Asian Dishes, lechon baboy and stege mad (drink for sale at the venue for a reasonable prices)
A lot of consolation prizes, Cultural show (singing , folk dancing hiphop and modern dance numbers)
If you don’t have a ticket yet please contact: Miss Araceli Andersen 40480096

Invitation for Babaylan Denmark's114th Gala Night & Fiesta

Menu for the buffet style dining on June 2, 2012

WORLDWIDE PROTEST AGAINST CHINA OVER INTRUSIONS IN PHILIPPINE WATERS

I’m worried if the tension between China and the Philippines will not solved diplomatically and you can see from the map below that the disputed Scarborough Shoal the one which the red S is very near to my Province around 300 km only. While by just looking that it is so far form the nearest Chinese land. We know China has a mighty military capability compared to the Philippines. As I read different articles there is rich source of natural gas beside abundant source of fish. I grew up near the sea which used the call the South China Sea and so I’m not so sure if the Philippine goverment renamed it as Western Philippines Sea. I can understand the reason or else they will claim that it’s theirs.

I received an email circulating to Filipinos worldwide to protest against China over the latest intrusion and it’s looks like David and Goliath if you compare the two countries. It’s intention was to show the world or let the world know what China is doing to my dear native land.
I did not hear any protest or demonstration of Filipinos here in Denmark but in my own little way I am reposting this here in my blog.

WORLDWIDE PROTEST AGAINST CHINA OVER INTRUSIONS IN PHILIPPINE WATERS

WHAT: Mass demonstrations will be held by Filipinos at all China consular offices in the United States (Washington DC, NY, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles and San Francisco), in Canada (Vancouver and Toronto) and in at least 20 other cities around the world. The largest protest will be held in Makati in the Philippines where former Philippine Pres. Fidel V. Ramos will join Broadway star Lea Salonga in speaking out against China’s “creeping invasion” of the Philippines.

WHEN: 12 noon, Friday, May 11, 2012

WHERE: China Consulate 1450 Laguna Street (corner Geary Blvd.) in San Francisco Meeting time: 11:00 AM in front of St. Mary’s Cathedral on Geary Blvd.

WHO: At least 500 Filipino-Americans including WW II veteran survivors of the Bataan Death March, seniors, students, religious groups, professionals, youth, Democrats, Republicans, Independents

Background: Ownership of the Scarborough Shoal, (which China calls “Huangyan Island”) located 124 miles from the Philippines, is disputed by China which is more than 500 miles away from the Shoal. The dispute came to a head on April 8, 2012 when eight Chinese fishing vessels set anchor in Scarborough Shoal After their presence was discovered by a Philippine Air Force surveillance plane, a Philippine Navy frigate went to the Shoal and boarded the trespassing vessels and discovered large quantities of illegally collected corals, giant clams, and live sharks. This incident was just the latest in a series of developments that had occurred in the past six months including: – Chinese ships firing on and harassing Philippine fishing boats and exploration and mapping vessels in the vicinity of the shoal, forcing them to withdraw – Chinese ships dropping steel posts and navigation buoys with Chinese markings in the waters around Scarborough Shoal – Chinese ships blocking the Philippine navy vessel, BRP Gregorio del Pilar, which sought to apprehend Chinese boats loaded with corals, rare fish and live baby sharks which were illegally caught and are prohibited under Philippine laws – Chinese planes buzzing Philippine Coast Guard vessels and fishing boats in the shoal. On April 10, 2012 Chinese government vessels were then dispatched to the scene where they were able to rescue the Chinese fishermen and their illegal catch. Since then, China has increased the number of its vessels in the area to 32 compared to just 2 vessels on the Philippine side. http://globalnation.inquirer.net/36035/32-chinese-ships-in-shoal-bar-filipino-fishers Major-Gen. Luo Yuan of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) declared that “it is the Philippines that violated China’s sovereignty over Huangyan Island by forcing an inspection of a Chinese fishing vessel. Therefore, action was required in order to respond to this unnecessary provocation to let both the Philippines and any potential future provocateur know that such actions will not be tolerated.” In its April 25 editorial, the Global Times, published by China’s official People’s Daily, warned that “China should select the most arrogant provocateur, conduct comprehensive strikes, and exert pressure economically, politically and militarily. If the water overwhelms China’s knees, other countries will find their necks in the water.” On May 7, 2012, China’s Vice Foreign Minister Fu Ying summoned the Philippine Charge d’Affairs in Beijing to demand that the Philippines “withdraw its vessels in the sea area around Huangyan Island, and to never again impede the operations of Chinese fishing vessels or Chinese government vessels performing their duties in accordance with Chinese law,” Fu said. The People’s Liberation Army Daily declared that Beijing will not flinch from a military response if the conflict escalates. “What we want to say is that anyone who tries in vain to seize sovereignty of Huangyan Island will be rebuffed by the Chinese government, Chinese people, and even more the Chinese military,” a commentary in the military paper said. http://www.malaya.com.ph/index.php/news/national/3281-china-in-tough-talk http://www.gmanetwork.com/news/story/257760/news/nation/china-issues-warnings-on-phl-state-media-says-ready-for-war

Philippine Foreign Secretary Albert Del Rosario outlined the country’s “three-track approach” to resolve its dispute with China: a political track focused on seeking the support of ASEAN member nations; a legal track based on filing a dispute settlement case before the United Nations and United Nations Convention on the Law Of the Seas (UNCLOS); and a diplomatic track of engaging in regular consultations with China to defuse the tensions. To support the Philippines in its dispute with China, Filipinos in America, numbering more than 4 million, organized a global protest against China’s consular offices in the US, Canada and cities all over the world, on Friday, May 11, at 12 noon in whatever time zone. “The global protest seeks to mobilize world public opinion, especially in the US, to oppose China’s hegemonic ambitions in the Philippines,” Rodel Rodis, president of the main sponsor of the rally, US Pinoys for Good Governance (USPGG). “We also want China to know that the 12 million Filipinos in the Diaspora will support the Philippines on this issue. In retaliation for the planned May 11 global protest, China has suspended all Chinese travel tours to the Philippines and all agricultural products from the Philippines. Military action has also bee threatened. Assessing China’s threats against the Philippines, one analyst noted: “I think this is happening because the Philippines is so weak. The Chinese government can beat the war drums all they want, and as loud as they want, and no war is going to happen. It’s akin to bullying someone in a wheelchair that you know can’t punch back.” But the bully should know that the man in the wheelchair has relatives abroad.

MANIFESTO ON MAY 11, 2012 On this day, Filipinos spread out all over the world are holding peaceful demonstrations to protest the continuing acts of aggression by China in Scarborough Shoal that is part of Philippine territory. Since the stand-off at Scarborough Shoal began over a month ago, the Chinese government has kept insisting on its “historic rights” to Scarborough and other areas that are within the exclusive economic zone of the Philippines, while refusing the Philippine government’s offer to raise the issue for mediation in the proper international tribunals, as provided for by several global conventions and agreements, mainly, the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea or UNCLOS. At the same time, China has repeatedly warned the Philippine government against moves that could “escalate” the tension or “internationalize” the conflict—a classic case of speaking from both sides of the mouth because it has no qualms about flaunting its military superiority and has, of last count, kept maritime surveillance vessels CMS 75 and 81, and the fisheries patrol vessel FLEC 310, alongside 30 Chinese fishing boats at Scarborough. China takes offense that, while hapless Filipino fishermen venture out to sea once more, the Philippine Coast Guard maintains one boat in the area along with a Bureau of Fisheries vessel. China has signalled a readiness to harass and shoo away Filipino fishermen, who for centuries have drawn life from the bounty of the seas off Masinloc province in Zambales. We cannot let pass this series of objectionable actions by China, a supposedly law-abiding member of the community of nations, or risk validating our giant Asian neighbor’s misplaced proprietary sense and embolden it to take further aggressive action—not only against the Philippines, but also against other small neighbors as well. Let it be clear to all that the Filipino people have no quarrel with their Chinese brothers and sisters, with whom they share centuries of good relations. Many Filipinos of Chinese descent have helped build, and continue to build, our nation. Our protest is directed at the overbearing actions and stance of the government in Beijing, which behaves like an arrogant overlord, even in the homes of its neighbors. The bounty of the seas—be it in Zambales, or in Recto Bank, or the small islands in the West Philippine Sea where Filipino communities have been growing—is not only for people to benefit from, but also to conserve. And the community of nations, mainly through the UN, have laid down clear guidelines for the conduct of all peoples seeking to harness economic wealth from nature. That is why all must live by set codes, in a rules-based setting at all times. All we ask is for the Chinese government to respect the rights of its neighbors, even while it needs to assert its national interest. If it continues on this path of obstinate bullying, it will only have itself to blame for the consequences of its folly. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-china-18016901 http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-18015538 http://www.gmanetwork.com/news/story/257760/news/nation/china-issues-warnings-on-phl-state-media-says-ready-for-war http://globalnation.inquirer.net/35543/scarborough-will-not-be-mischief-reef-redux http://globalnation.inquirer.net/36003/scarborough-shoal-standoff-a-historicaltimeline

 

Invitation to Babaylan Denmark/ Odense Summer Party 2011

Calling all Filipinos their families and friends in Odense and nearby areas in Fyn you are all invited to attend the first Su mmer Party of Babaylan Denmark/Odense.

Invitation-to-Babaylan-Odense-Summer-Party-odense-2011

Pista sa Mayo 2011 & Babaylan Denmark’s 14th Anniversary

Please join the Pista sa Mayo 2011 at the St. Anne’s Church Main Hall, Dronning Elizabeth Alle 3, 2300 KBH. S from 10.30-20.00 .

Filcom Denmark- Pasko

Filcom DK - the United organizations in Denmark joined Christmas Party in Copenhagen

After the succesful Independence Day this year the FILCOM- DK which consists of various organizations, church groups and other groups in Denmark will be having another joined events this Christmas called Paskøbenhavn. I’m one of the active organizer of this event and I’m very amazed how these Filipinos in Denmark sacrificed their precious time for the community. All FILCOM events are non profit and any proceeds will be used for common Filipino Activity in Denmark like the on going Consular Outreach and Mobile Passporting at the St. Anne Church big hall December 10-11 from 9-18, the Independence Event and this coming Christmas party.

Please contact any member of FILCOM-DK or you can email: babaylanDK (at) babaylan.dk if you want to reserved a ticket or check the Facebook group of FILCOM-DK here

This event is sponsored by

OFW open letter to the incoming President Sen. Benigno Aquino III

I arrived in the Philippines during the election day which the only son the late President Corazon Aquino won and in just few hours he will be sworned into office and I want to join my fellow Filipinos asking the next president improve the lives of millions of OFW’s who are hailed as the new heroes (Ang Bagong Bayani) because of their remittances that keep the Philippines economy afloat.

I’m a true blooded product of OFW my parents has been sending remittances for almost 30 years and after working for more than 25 years my father received his pension for just 1 year he suddenly died and he did not enjoyed the fruit of his labor so to speak and my mother did not received any compensation at all. The remittance we received went to college tuition and other expenses . We became degree holders, 3 engineers and 1 dentist but my mother sometimes complain why we followed their footsteps by working abroad when they sacrificed all those years away from us just to provide us a good future by finishing our education. I also asked myself that question why?

After college graduation we were very idealistic we don’t want to go abroad because we are working but after few years working hard just to pay our bills but we still depended on our parents remittances to make ends met, our salary can not provide us with life our parents gave us. My brother who has 2 children at that time blindly joined my parents and is working not as a dentist but in a restaurant although he has the possibility to practice over there he don’t have the time to go to the language school. Now he also go to the bank every month to send his hard earned money to his family and I asked him if he is happy with that, he said yes and no. He’s happy that he can send his children to college and can afford to buy what he wants. Thanks to the modern devices he can chat or talk with his family unlike during my parents time we only relied only by snail mail. But will his children will also follow suit yes maybe if the government will not improved.

I’ve been staying in the Philippines for almost 7 weeks now and I’m too sad to say it became worst pollution, undisciplined drivers, stop lights that don’t work, poverty anywhere, they say it’s cheap it wasn’t,  common commodities ar so expensive. Everywhere I go there is an SM (Shoe Mart Department store) why? because of millions OFW’s who’s family can now eat in Jollibee and buy in the department store. Excuse me, but having the biggest mall in Asia doesn’t mean we are the best or our economy is better. Because every hard earned money is spent without thinking of the future. Maybe you will say it provide jobs to degree holders who can not find any real job so they end up promo personnels in the department stores just ask how much they earn and we all know that the businessmen are profiting from the contractual basis employment.

This should only a short post but it’s really disappointing to see all the college graduates seeking  greener pasture abroad to the point that they are willing to work as a domestic helpers or au pairs or doctors studying to become nurse so they can work abroad speaking of brain drain. I don’t have anything against domestic helpers its a noble job we are losing valuable  resources now its the right time for the new goverment to act and reevaluate its policies and focus more on the long term. We can’t stop migration it’s embedded in our blood.

So I support and join fellow Overseas Filipino Worlwide in their plea to the incoming President.

Dear Sen. Aquino,
First and foremost, we extend our deepest and sincerest congratulations on your ascendancy to the highest-elected office of our beloved country through a democratic process that every Filipino can take pride in for many generations to come. The first step inherent in the process of transformation is recognizing the need for change – and our capacity to change for the better! Thus, from this point onward, we are hopeful that inspired by your convincing victory and leadership, every Filipino will assume his or her role and responsibility to change the status quo by initiating positive changes towards a better and brighter Philippines, no matter where he or she is, and regardless of what citizenship he or she now holds.
We, the Overseas Filipinos Worldwide (OFW), are a group of Filipinos based abroad and in the Philippines, representing various organizations implementing projects in the Philippines and in our host countries for many years now that are aimed to strategically harness the Philippines’ migration gains into mechanisms for the development of the motherland and our communities of origin.
Migration gains are mainly remittances by overseas Filipinos to their family members, which are now in the region of USD17 billion and are the primary source of livelihood for millions of Philippine households. At 10.8% of the country’s GDP, they are also the third biggest source of the country’s foreign currency reserves and act as primary driver for our economy, shielding us from bankruptcy during the financial crisis in 1997 and the current one. The Filipino diaspora, estimated now at about 10 million working or residing in 239 countries and territories worldwide, send back donations to various humanitarian causes, such as disaster–relief, medical missions, schoolhouses, and other infrastructure. These contributions supplement local and national government deficits and, as of 2003, have already amounted to USD218 million, per BSP figures in that year. We do not count here the investments made by OFWs in real estate and the education and health of their family members, and the money spent on various goods and services, as well as on construction, food, shelter, and other inflows that support sectors like the airlines, shopping centers, and banks. Yet, after more than three decades of overseas employment, we do not see genuine signs of poverty alleviation, and instead more and more of our countrymen leave for work abroad.

Ironically, the Philippine model of overseas migration has become a model of sorts, for other migrant-origin countries to emulate and even copy. This however does not tell the whole story or reveal the other face of migration that has escaped the serious attention of past administrations, specifically, the social costs that migration has bred since government-managed deployment started in the early 70s and up to the present, where we now see at least 3,000 of many of the best and brightest Filipinos leaving daily to take up jobs overseas, due to local employment deficits. Other nations like South Korea, Italy, Ireland, Portugal, and Taiwan, who once were labor exporting countries, have been able to get over their migration hump, as a result of their governments’ consciously harnessing their workers’ remittances and investing them to develop local infrastructure, shipyards, factories, and other industries. Convinced of the effectiveness of government programs and also trustful of their leaders’ sincerity, these countries’ expatriates and overseas workers, at great sacrifice, left their high-paying jobs overseas and returned to their home countries to lend their talents and acquired expertise in further helping their respective country’s leap towards developed status even working at low salaries. India, another migrant-sending country, is also now going in that direction. These examples serve to illustrate the dictum that migration should be temporary, that it must not be used as a substitute for development. The desirable goal of countries wishing to be strong and globally competitive must necessarily be self-sufficiency and the ability to provide its people with necessary components needed for their human development.
The advent of a new administration, especially one under your inspired leadership, is a good time to ask where the Philippines is going regarding migration, and to act accordingly. Shall we continue to send out our people and rely on remittances and without any development objectives in sight? Conversely, don’t we have the talent to formulate a road map towards self-sufficiency over a period of time, in order that the hemorrhage of talents could be stopped, that a crisis in our dysfunctional families and society at large could be averted, and so that our people do not have to take migration as a forced option? If long-term migration goals are set now, the government could in the meantime work on some basic but urgent deployment and migration issues in order to clear the way towards having a genuine and serious program on translating migration gains for use in human development. In view of this, we humbly suggest starting to look at the following:

  • The government must send clear and strong signals that migration and remittances are only temporary measures to help the government prepare for a longer-term goal of self sufficiency, in which Filipinos no longer look at migration as a forced option. This must be integrated in Medium-Term Development Plans, which is currently being formulated by NEDA, and which should also include how in the meantime strategies, policies, and mechanisms for the productive use and investment of remittances could be harnessed to strengthen the country’s macroeconomic fundamentals.
  • Create a position for a Special Presidential Adviser on Migration and Development, who will work with a technical working group (TWG) composed of qualified individuals who have a background in migration and development, including knowledgeable and committed migrant leaders. Among others, the TWG could conduct studies, consultations, and discussions, and come up with updated situationers and appropriate policy recommendations on how to effectively translate remittances and migrant resources to develop local economies; and to address social costs, facilitation of return migration, reintegration, mechanisms for the counterparting of funds between Filipino diaspora groups, LGUs, and development agencies for local and countryside development, incentives for OFW investments in agriculture, SME, infrastructure, microfinance, cooperatives, and other sectors that need stronger funding support. The work could take the form of draft legislation for study by Congress’s standing committee on OFWs or form the basis for an Executive or Administrative Order, whichever is appropriate or workable. The committee’s work shall be purely consultative and should not supplant the work of government migration agencies.
  • Review and monitor the performance of government agencies in charge of migrant workers, such as the POEA, OWWA, CFO, and the Department of Foreign Affairs, with a view to strengthening these institutions, reducing wasteful and ineffective programs or duplication of work, giving agencies needed resources and funds for effective implementation of programs, and strengthening the capacity of their overseas offices to become centers of service to migrant workers overseas.
  • · Departing OFWs contribute USD25 each as a requirement for departure and membership in OWWA and entitlement of welfare benefits. The total corpus of this trust fund is already at the level of at least PHP10 billion. The disposition and administration of this fund has been subject of criticisms, as its use has not been transparent and shown susceptibility to mismanagement. Specifically, reforms in OWWA should (1) impose strict criteria in the process of selection of people who will sit in the Board of Trustees, such that only those qualified and are committed to work for their constituents are appointed, e.g., women OFWs, sea-based, land-based, etc. (2) OWWA proceedings should be made transparent and open to public scrutiny, particularly the investment of the trust funds. (3) the incoming administration, for the benefit of OFWs and through the working group, should require from the current OWWA board an accounting of OWWA funds and how they were invested/used. To this end, the most recent COA audit of migration agencies, like POEA, OWWA, DFA, and POLO offices overseas, must be consulted.
  • The Commission on Filipinos Overseas (CFO) and the National Reintegration Center for OFWs (NRCO) are two small agencies that are doing important work on mobilizing diaspora contributions for development and assistance to OFWs who are reintegrating to Philippine society after working abroad. The CFO, for instance, has submitted recommendations on how gaps and barriers to enhanced diaspora contributions could be addressed, but these have never been acted upon. The NRCO, in the three years it has been created, has given assistance and referrals on livelihood and employment to OFW returnees affected by the global crisis. Their work should be seriously looked into, and whenever necessary, the appropriate level of funds, resources, and support should be given to these agencies.
  • Lack of financial literacy or of the ability to use resources and incomes productively and wisely has been highlighted as a major cultural barrier among not only OFWs but also for most Filipinos. It prevents our people from improving their socio-economic conditions, despite years of employment in the Philippines or overseas. This refers to lack of savings or investment mindset and excessive spending on non-essentials. No less than an institutionalized nationwide program on financial literacy will be able to address this and should include not only OFWs but also members of their family. The BSP has been the lead government agency that has conducted financial literacy seminars for OFWs and families since 2006 in more than 30 Philippine cities and 10 cities overseas. This program could be improved and expanded through an impact assessment of the campaign and which might include providing resources for enlisting the DECS to include financial literacy and migration as part of school curriculum, starting from grade school, or the LGUs, by including financial literacy and social costs of migration in the Pre-employment Orientation Seminars (PEOS) conducted in their territories for intending migrants.

As a final note, while the recommendations above address specific OFW issues, the programs you had avowed to pursue in your electoral campaign on good governance—better access to health, education, employment and livelihood, and business opportunities for all—are all in the right track, constitute the basic elements for self-sufficiency, and provide viable options to our citizens to remain in the country and to devote their talents and resources to developing the homeland. On these, please be assured of our continued support.

Signed:

Doris Alfafara, Habagat Foundation, The Netherlands
Ren Arrieta, USA
Alex Veloso Bello, Saudi Arabia
Marvin Bionat, USA
Ding Bagasao, Economic Resource Center for Overseas Filipinos (ERCOF), Philippines
Jack Catarata, Germany
Basco Fernandez, Damayang Pilipino sa Nederland, The Netherlands
Lorna Lardizabal Dietz
Cristina Liamzon, Italy
Judith Puyat-Magnaye, USA
Mariel Vincent Rapisura, SEDPI Philippines
Leila Rispens-Noel, Wimler Partnership for Social Progress, Hongkong/Contact Person
Dennis Yaun, Luxembourg
James Zamora, Philippines

This was posted in Facebook and in this website Overseas Filipinos Worldwide

Filipina Artist at the Biggest Art Exhibition in the city of Copenhagen and Malmø-

Youth Vårsalong is Denmark’s largest art exhibition for young people. The Copenhagen City is agin hosting the exhibit and this year’s theme is titled “What I dream about”. Well, it’s interesting to see the young artist visualize their dream into various art expression modes like photographs, films, sculptures, and many many more.

Come and see the dreams of the young artists whose 220 art works were selected by a professional panel of judges among the hundreds of submitted works. The art exhibit will be opened by the Child and Youth Mayor Anne Vang.

We, are proud to announce that the Babaylan Denmark’s illustrator and cartoonist is chosen for two consecutive years to be part of this big exhibit form April 29 to 8th of May 2010 in Copenhagen City Hall and subseqently in the city hall of City Hall of Malmø in Sweden

Prior to the exhibition, a private viewing on Wednesday, April 28, 2010 at 17.00-19.00 hr will be held for the artists together with their parents, families and friends.

Among the 200 young artists from around, Copenhagen, Århus, Odense, Esbjerg, Aalborg & Malmø, Muir was lucky to get her chance again to participate in the yearly exhibition.

The artist impression of herself

Muir Jover is the daughter of the current Babaylan Denmark’s Chairperson, Judy Jover.

For more information, please visit http://www.ungdomsskolen.kk.dk

Church Services in Norway and Sweden

Here are the list of church services I gathered in Norway and in Denmark who offer mass/church service in English.

image source: www.i-heart-god.com

Catholic Church

Oslo

St. Olav’s Cathedral
Every Sunday English Masses at 1800H

Address: Akersveien 1, 0177 Oslo
Contact Person: Rev. Fr. Amando Bergantino Alfaro Jr. and Ms. Elizabeth Helland (Church Secretary)

Contact No.: +47 2321 9573, +47 2298 2165 and + 47 9940 5608 (Mobile)

St. Joseph’s Church
Every Sunday English Masses at 0930H Every 4th Sunday of the Month: 1400H (Tagalog Mass)
Every Friday: 1800H (Tagalog Mass)

Address: Akersveien 4, 0177 Oslo
Contact Person: Rev. Fr. Redentor M. Molina
Contact No.: +47 9986 4952

Copenhagen:

Skt. Annæ’s Church
Saturday and Sunday English Masses at 1700H

Address: Skt. Elizabeth’s Allé 2, 2300 Kbh. , Denmark

Contact Person: Fr. Benny Mathew,C.Ss.R
Contact No.: +45 – 2193 4215 (Mobile)
e-Mail: bennycssr@hotmail.com
Chaplain for the Filipino Community: Fr. Joe Toms, C.Ss.R.
Contact No.: +45 5322 5232 (mobile)
e-Mail: joetoms77@ymail.com

How to get there: take 5 A from the city and get down in Tycho Brahes Alle note is already Zone 3 so it’s better stand up in Englandsvej busstop which is still zone 1 and walk around 100 meters ahead or take 3500S and go down in Englandsvej)

Sakramentskirken
Wednesday English Mass& Novena at 1700H

Address: Nørrebrogade 27C, 2200 Copenhagen N, Denmark
Contact Person 1: Fr.Reinhold Sahner
Contact No.:+45 3535 6825 (fastnet)
e-Mail: sakramentskirken@mail-telia.dk
How to get there: Take bus no. 5A and go down in Ravnsborgade Busstop.

Sunday English Mass 1800H

Contact Person 2: Fr. Carroll Parker, Omi
Contact No.: +45 3125 5996 (Mobile)
e-Mail: carroll.parker@mail.dk

Vor Frue Kirken in Herlev
Thursday English Mass at 0930H and Sunday English Mass at 1130H

Address: Herlevgårdsvej 14, 2730 Herlev
Contact Person: Fr. Carroll Parker, Omi
Contact No.: +45 3125 5996 (Mobile)
e-Mail: carroll.parker@mail.dk

St. Knud Lavard’s Church
Sunday English Mass at 1300H

Address: Lyngbygårdsvej 1A, 2800 Lyngby
Contact Person: Fr. Alren Soosaipillai, OMI
Office tel nr: 45 87 08 88
Contact No: 50 15 52 26
e-Mail: alrenomi@gmail.com

Jesus is Lord

Oslo

Jesus is Lord Norway
Every Sunday: 1530H – 1800H
Every Thursday: 1800H – 2100H

Address: American Lutheran Church, Fritznersgate 15, 0264 Oslo
Contact Person: Pastor Gilbert Palmero
Contact No.: +47 9528-2491
e-Mail: jilnorwaychapter@hotmail.com

Copenhagen

Jesus is Lord Copenhagen
Every Sunday: 1445H – 1700H

Address: Allehelgens Kirke 43, Ungarnsgade 2300, Kbh S
Contact Person: Pastor Precy Soltes-Ofori
Contact No.: +45 3123 9778 and +45 3646 3113
website: www.jesusislordchurch.dk

Living World Bible Center

Living World Bible Cente

Every Sunday: 1500H – 1730H

Address: Geitmyrsveien 7D 0107 Oslo
Contact Person: Pastor Vic del Valle and Sis. Ana del Valle
Contact No.: + 47 4023 0603 and + 47 4024 9524
e-Mail: livingwordbiblecenter@yahoo.com

Filipino Christian Church

Oslo

Filipino Christian Church Norway
Every Sunday: 1400H – 1700H

Address: Filadelfia Center St. Olavsgate
Contact Person: Pastor John Angeles
Contact No.: +47 6084 3667
e-Mail: jpa4569@yahoo.com

Copenhagen:

Filipino Christian Church Copenhagen
Every Sunday: 1730H – 2030H

Address: Culture Hall/Kultur Sal, Drejervej 15-21,2400 Copenhagen NV
Contact Person: Pastor Raymond Osias
Contact No.: +45 2692 9314
Website: www.fcccommunities.com

Iglesia ni Cristo 1

Copenhagen:

Filipino Christian Church Copenhagen
Every Sunday: 1730H – 2030H

Iglesia ni Cristo
Every Thursday: 1900Hpm-2000H ;Every Sunday: 1000H – 1100H

Address: Brønshøjvej 12, 2700 København
Contact Person: Rossal Kiilerich
Contact No.: +45 41233679
e-mail: divinekiilerich@yahoo.com

Workship services are both conducted in English

Copenhagen Community Church (CCC)

Copenhagen:

Copenhagen Community Church
Sundays: 1100H – 1300H

Norre Farimagsgade 45
1364 Copenhagen K

Remembering the People’s Power Revolution 24 years ago

People’s Power Revolution is also known as Edsa Revolution or  Edsa 1.

February 25, 1986 I was at home in the province while my father was listening to the radio 24 hours a day hoping and praying that the revolution will turn into a peaceful one. I was 4th year high school student time at that time nearing the final exam  and graduation was set to end of March. There was some kind of uncertainty that something will bad will happened just seeing those battalion of soldiers being called for reinforcement and the tanks make you feel like there will be a lot of casualties but thank God it was peaceful, the Marcoses fled the country together with General Ver.  I used to think I belong to the People’s power generation entering the college with a pocketful of dream and hope for a better future.

I vaguely remember the martial law but there something about curfew so I’m glad that because of people power revolution I was able to go home late at night without any hassles after partying/disco opps no I usually took night classes.

After 24 years I still think that it was the best thing that happened in my home country because we will not her writing or expressing our opinions if we are under military government. The Philippines politics maybe had changed, from 2 party system to multi party system or the idealism but the politician are still the same or should I say the same political clans are still in the limelight even the Marcoses are back which maybe might hinder our dream of experiencing the true meaning democracy but we should not give up.

I’m proud to be a Filipino even though I live in Denmark because of this 1986 People’s Power Revolution was the inspiration behind the toppling down of communistic dictators in Eastern Europe and the fall of the Berlin Wall and even the orange revolution in Ukraine.

Whenever I read news or forums the Filipinos are forever blaming the goverment for poverty because of corruption which I agree but let us not forget that once upon a time 24 years ago we were or I should say our parents at that time risked their lives against the dictator and by hearing and seeing it once again the oneness and the intensity of prayer and faith, we will think twice when we go to cast our vote in May.The Philippines is still young democracy compared to the European States even Denmark it took them several centuries before attaining what they have today. Thank you Ninoy, thank you Cory and the Filipinos who believed in miracles. God Bless the Philippines.