National Conference in Canada to Unite Filipino Youth for Liberation and Democracy

National Conference in Canada to Unite Filipino Youth for Liberation and Democracy

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Art work by Jayson Patrimonio Palolan

First Announcement

September 18, 2016

On November 18-20, 2016, various Filipino youth organizations across Canada are gathering in Toronto under the theme Sulong Kabataan: Onward with the struggle for people’s liberation and democracy for a just and lasting peace. The national conference is initiated by ANAKBAYAN, an organization which unites Filipino youth from all walks of life – for genuine national sovereignty and independence, social justice, human rights and people’s democracy, and an enduring peace.

As students and young workers, Filipino youth are amongst the most marginalized sectors in Canada. “Thousands of young Filipinos are being displaced due to the persisting unemployment, poverty, hunger, and landlessness in the Philippines,” says Rhea Gamana of Anakbayan-Toronto. “Upon arriving in Canada, their troubles are not over.”

Set on the weekend of the observance of November 17th as International Students Day, the conference aims to spark a strong movement of Filipino youth and students across the country. “Young Filipino activist and community organizers have been at the forefront of various struggles in the country for decades — from labour, campus, gender and environmental issues,” shares Lesley Lauren, member of Anakbayan-Toronto. Sulong Kabataan celebrates the anti-imperialist and anti-colonial struggles Filipino youth have engaged in both in Philippines and Canada.

At the same time, the conference also aims to strengthen Filipino youth’s capacity as community organizers in their local neighbourhoods, workplaces, and campuses. Anakbayan emphasizes how this cannot be done without strengthening solidarity efforts with Indigenous and other oppressed sectors in an imperialist centre like Canada.

Sulong Kabataan intends to engage youth with interactive workshops and cultural performances to tell our stories as diasporic youth in Canada,” shares Gamana, “and reassert our role as active actors towards the community’s fight towards liberation and democracy.”

In Toronto, for more information, contact:

Sarah Salise

anakbayan.toronto@gmail.com

anakbayanto.org/

facebook.com/Anakbayan.Toronto/

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Youth in celebration of resistance

Land is Life, Anakbayan Toronto’s fifth annual Diwa ng Kasarinlan (Spirit of Independence) event held on Saturday, July 16 at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education was a cultural celebration of resistance in Philippine history and current society. The event was also a fundraiser for Sulong Kabataan, a Canada wide conference for youth this November 18th- 20th taking place in Toronto. During the programme, many references were made to recent events such as the displacement of Lumads from ancestral lands and the violent dispersal of farmers in Kidapawan,  stressing the importance of land to the survival of the people in the Philippines.

The cultural event was held in solidarity with the International Solidarity Missions and International Conference for People’s Rights in the Philippines, which is taking place in the Philippines from July 16th to the 24th. The conference aims to examine and promote awareness of the living conditions of various regions and communities where human rights violations have been increasing.

Filipino youth – and Anakbayan youth prefer to use the gender-free term “Filipinx” – in and outside of the Philippines often express their struggle of staying connected to their culture. “It is interesting to discover that youth can identify with their own struggles in both here (Toronto) and of their fellow Filipinos at home”, says Viel Perida, lead event coordinator. The Land is Life event provided an opportunity for young people to celebrate their roots through song, dance, spoken word, and traditional instruments.

The event lineup featured returning crowd-pleasers, like jazz singer Belinda Corpuz and ethnomusic group Panday Sining, as well as emerging artists to the DnK scene. Toni Oponda and Rachel Chiong captivated the crowd with their spoken word pieces. Mariz and Myka Lacorte showed off their hip hop dance skills, while New York-based Kinding Sindaw Melayu Heritage enchanted the audience with pre-colonial traditional dances. Ron Culianista, Mary Carl Guiao, and Justin Lima also entertained the audience through musical performances.

Alongside the featured cultural performances was a lineup of presenters starting with a keynote speech from Dr. Nonilon Queano on the importance of cultural work in the struggle for National Democracy in the Philippines. Jesson Reyes and Gabi Abis spoke about the work of Migrante Ontario not only with the workers but also their children. Meanwhile, Ben Corpuz of Philippine Advancement through Arts and Culture (PATAC) briefly outlined the 15-point agenda to President Duterte by various People’s organizations, which includes a push for the resumption of the peace talks between the Philippine government and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP).

What purpose does art serve?

An interaction at the event sparked an opportunity to begin dialogues long needed in the artistic communities in North America. Anakbayan Toronto encourages the youth not only to embrace their heritage through song and dance, but to go beyond by learning about the struggles of the communities from whom this art originates.

As a community outside of the homeland, it is important to hold critical discussions on the use of traditional arts and culture. We must always ask what purpose does art serve and for whom is it intended?

Moving forward

Anakbayan Toronto looks forward to collaborating with its allies and the broader community to begin further educational discussions and workshops to reclaim and preserve the integrity of the culture of the peoples in the Philippines. Anakbayan Toronto invites the youth interested in learning more about their cultural heritage to join them on this journey.

You can follow Anakbayan Toronto on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and visit their website anakbayanto.org for updates on Sulong Kabataan and other events.###

 

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Land is Life! the fifth Diwa ng Kasarinlan

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Land is Life

Filipinx Youth celebrating our culture of resistance

Arts | Music | Poetry

July 16, 2016, 1-4pm

Ontario Institute of Studies in Education (OISE), 5th floor Room: 5260

Join us for this year’s fifth Diwa ng Kasarinlan (DnK) as we celebrate our history and culture of resistance!

 

How do we get to know Filipino pride for the right reasons?

(Press Release)

How do we get to know Filipino pride for the right reasons?

Most migrants are occasional activists while they are away from their home-country and as they endure attachments to their host country. But there is an increasing number of immigrant generations who are engaging transnational activities on a regular basis.

Some Filipinos of various backgrounds engage in activities to uphold democracy at home and to foster political participation in Canada. For youth group Anakbayan-Toronto, hosting the annual cultural event to commemorate the founding anniversary of the Katipunan is important to establishing the ties that bind to their revolutionary roots.

Sarah Salise, event coordinator of Diwa ng Kasarinlan (Spirit of Independence) 2015, said it’s like “getting to know Filipino pride for the right reasons”.

Distinct from the number of summer events promoting Filipino arts and culture in Toronto, this occasion celebrates the militant struggle of contemporary Filipinos worldwide for national democracy in the Philippines.

Some of the presenters include Bern Jagunos of the Canadian chapter of the International Coalition for Human Rights in the Philippines (ICHRP). Jagunos shared about the recently concluded grassroots International Peoples’ Tribunal in Washington, DC last July 18th.

A jury of lawyers, scholars, and human rights defenders assembled to look into the mass violation of human rights in the Philippines. The Peoples’ Tribunal declared President Benigno Simeon Aquino III and the US government as represented by Barack Obama, guilty of crimes against the Filipino people. This verdict is part of the historic fight of the Filipino masses against US imperialism and local reaction.

Diwa ng Kasarinlan also served as the People’s State of the Nation Address (SONA) as a parallel protest to the SONA delivered by Pres. Aquino in Manila. Petronila Cleto of Gabriela alliance of Filipino women spoke of the dire situation of their sector under the present government. A performance by iWWorkers portrayed the lived experience of Filipinos forced into migration. While Rafunzel Penanueva of the Filipino Worker’s Network expressed the significance of unionizing to assert worker’s rights in the workplace, especially here in Canada.

Anakbayan-Toronto member Lesley Valiente encouraged fellow compatriots to connect back to their roots by joining solidarity missions and educational trips to the country.

Animated by the progressive developments among people’s organizations, the audience danced along in the pop-rock act Uppercase band and hip hop beats of Tagalog rap group Southeast Cartel. “When we seek pleasure in this manner, this is our way of resistance,” comments co-emcee Gary Fondevilla.

It also featured homegrown talents of songstress Belinda Corpuz accompanied by the music of Malcolm Connor and reading of literary pieces by Kay de Guzman and Keith Villena of Akdaan writers collective.

The fourth annual DnK is supported by BAYAN Canada organizations, OPSEU Region 5, UFCW Canada, Filipino Workers Network, Cookies and Crease, and SEAS Centre.

Anakbayan-Toronto is one of the overseas chapters of the global network of over 180 grassroots Filipino youth organizations who aspire for national liberation and just and lasting peace in the Philippines.

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For Reference: Sarah Salise, Secretary General

anakbayanto.org

anakbayan.toronto@gmail.com

facebook.com/anakbayan.toronto

twitter.com/anakbayanto

instagram.com/anakbayan.toronto/

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iWWorkers’ cultural presentation
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Francesca Esguerra’s visual art display
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Kay de Guzman of Akdaan writers collective.
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Keith Villena of Akdaan writers collective.
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Southeast Cartel
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Ibrahim Bozai of OPSEU
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Rick Esguerra delivering the solidarity message of Dr. Chandu Claver of Bayan-Canada
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Rhea and Luisito performing “Dyandi”
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solidarity message from PATAC

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A message from Filipino Worker’s Network member of UNITE HERE Local 75
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Cookies and Crease https://www.facebook.com/pages/Cookies-Crease/724703590960243
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Petronila Cleto of Gabriela Ontario
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UPPERCASE BAND

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For more photos of the event please visit our Facebook page

Diwa ng Kasarinlan 2014

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Toronto– Local Filipino youth organization Anakbayan-Toronto and Filipino Canadian Association of Ryerson (FCAR) invites everyone to the third Diwa ng Kasarinlan Spirit of Independence Saturday, July 19th from 1-4pm at Ryerson University Student Campus Centre.

Diwa ng Kasarinlan is a free annual celebration of the formation of the Katipunan and its heroes as a way to realize Filipino pride that comes from our history of epic struggle. This year’s theme is “Powershift : Power to the People.”

Join us for a day of festivities featuring local Toronto talent. We are excited to present new and returning performers such as local Filipino hip hop group Southeast Cartel, No Budget Band, Filipino poetry collective Akdaan, and the all-women kulintang ensemble Pantayo. We are also featuring the performance of spoken word artist Spin El Poeta and local Cordillera youth group Matineb.

Diwa ng Kasarinlan is a celebration of our assertion for genuine Philippine independence and continues our fight for People’s true rights and freedom. It will feature talks, various artistic performances, and community empowerment.

AnakBayan Toronto (AB-TO) is an all-youth advocacy group organizing events around issues affecting the Filipino community in Canada and the struggle for national democracy in the Philippines.

Diwa ng Kasarinlan

Saturday, July 19th from 1-4pm

Ryerson University Student Campus Centre

55 Gould St. Toronto, Ontario

 

For more information and updates follow us and use hashtag #DnK2014

Facebook: http://fb.com/Anakbayan.Toronto/

Facebook event page: http://on.fb.me/UbC25T

Website: http://www.anakbayanto.org

Twitter: @anakbayanto

Event: http://dnk2014.eventbrite.com

TORONTO FILIPINO YOUTH: EMBODY THE FIGHTING SPIRIT OF BONIFACIO IN HIS 150TH BIRTH ANNIVERSARY.

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The significance of Andres Bonifacio’s revolutionary life story is not lost on history books. Youth group Anakbayan-Toronto (AB-TO) lead the 150th birth anniversary of the working class hero Andres Bonifacio on November 30 in the University of Toronto. Simultaneously, the local chapter also celebrates the first year anniversary together with over a hundred chapters around the world.

Solidarity video messages from BAYAN Canada spokesperson Dr. Chandu Claver spearheaded the action packed day as AB-TO members listened attentively to his militant greetings. Anakbayan-Seattle Chairperson Jennilee Policarpio wished the Toronto group and conveyed the significance of building the first overseas chapter eleven years ago to address the issue of Filipino-American youth to connect them all back to the Philippines. The national situation of the Philippines was reported back by Anakbayan Philippines Chairperson Vencer Crisostomo who enunciated the need for all Anakbayan chapters to organize and mobilize against the incompetent BS Aquino administration.

“Hindi na nating maaring tiisin na magpatuloy ang kahirapan ng ating mamamayan sa ilalim ng isang rehimeng taksil sa taong bayan, at para lamang sa iilan at mapagsamantala” said Crisostomo.

Outgoing Secretary General Jesson Reyes facilitated the discussions in remembering Bonifacio and the revolutionary movement Katipunan, which spearheaded the 1896 Revolution, the first anti-colonial uprising in entire Asia and spawned as well the first republican government in this region.

Under the theme “Continue the Unfinished Struggle,” the gathering brought together youth from different backgrounds and showed a wonderful expression of their fervor for genuine change in society.

Since it was founded in 2012, AB-TO has carried out its mandate to uphold the rights, welfare and interests of the Filipino youth, migrants and workers in the Greater Toronto Area. More so it has continued to empower people from different backgrounds through its real-time and online project Kamalayan by providing short courses on critical Philippine history, identity and questions on national pride. It contributed to researches on the Filipino youth situation, local campaigns like Raise the Minimum Wage in Ontario, extension of consular services in provinces with a growing Filipino population and fundraising initiatives for super Typhoon Haiyan survivors.

Local youth organizer Rhea Gamana, founding chairperson of Anakbayan-Toronto, helped provide a framework on the current situation of Filipino youth in Canada. Gamana shared her insights on why Filipinos leave the Philippine only to find more challenges after arriving in the host country.

AB-TO members all showed earnestness in learning more of their heritage and keeping abreast on both current affairs in the community and in the home front. New members also committed in helping out in realizing the spirit Bonifacio and the Katipunan imbued by serving the people as everyone clapped and chanted in unison.

For more information on how to get involved, visit www.anakbayato.org, email anakbayan.toronto@gmail.com or follow AB-TO on twitter @anakbayanto

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Anakbayan Toronto Challenges Filipino Youth on Identity & Struggle with Diwa Ng Kasarinlan 2013 on July 27th.

 Filipino youth group Anakbayan-Toronto (AB-T) partners with Philippine Advancement Through Arts and Culture (PATAC) to host Diwa ng Kasarinlan 2013.

What does it mean to identify yourself as a distinct people, how can you affect local realities and how can you mobilize with an action to empower the community? On July 27, Toronto Filipinos are invited to challenge their struggles in an afternoon of engaging activities, workshops and cultural performances.

Diwa ng Kasarinlan looks to serve as an arena for inquiring a much deeper appreciation, particularly about the engagement of Filipino youth revolutionaries during the Spanish colonial period. Diwa ng Kasarinlan, which means for “Spirit of Independence” debuted last year on July 7th. This date marks the anniversary of the founding of the Katipunan, the revolutionary movement led by Andres Bonifacio, which waged war against the Spanish colonizers in the struggle for independence.

AB-T and PATAC are proud partners in this event aimed at fostering a deeper understanding of the Filipino culture hand-in-hand with the contemporary youth’s struggles. This year the event will take place at Palmerston Public Library Theatre at 560 Palmerston Ave. Toronto, ON M6G 2P7 on July 27, 2013 – 12:00PM – 6:00PM

The first part will feature a film showing of a movie related to the history of Philippine independence. Then will be followed up by performances featuring local talents. Complementing the workshops on Filipino culture, history, and current events, participants will be engaged in interactive cultural workshops, which allows them to extend the presentation in creative ways. Toronto Filipinos are encouraged to be part of the conversation by using the hashtag #DnK2013.

Diwa ng Kasarinlan was created by young Filipino-Canadian organizers to strengthen their ties to the motherland. The aim is not only to learn about native food, traditional dances and pop culture but to provide a venue for inquiring a much deeper appreciation of those who’ve come before and have taken the revolutionary path.

Come and celebrate Filipino pride that comes from our history of epic struggle!

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About Anakbayan-Toronto

Anakbayan Toronto is one of the overseas chapters of Anakbayan, a Philippines-wide organization which unites Filipino youth from all walks of life – for the cause of human rights, national freedom and genuine democracy in the country. In Canada, the group engages the youth to raise sociopolitical awareness of Filipino-Canadians and Filipino im/migrant youth through regular educational discussions, workshops and similar activities.

About PATAC
The Philippine Advancement Through Arts and Culture (PATAC) is a community based organization, registered federally as a non-profit organization. It strives to promote the Philippines’ progressive and nationalist culture, its people, culture and struggles through music, photo, spoken word, print and other artistic medium.

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For tickets, please check
dnk2013.eventbrite.com

For more info feel free to contact us:

anakbayan.toronto@gmail.com

Imagehttp://www.anakbayanto.org

 

Diwa ng Kasarinlan 2013: Struggles

Join us and be part of the Filipino community youth to learn about our culture, history and the legacy of our revolutionary forefathers through music, performances, and interactive education.

AnakBayan Toronto (ABT) is an all-youth advocacy group organizing around issues affecting the Filipino community in Canada and the struggle for national democracy in the Philippines. Since it traces its roots to the revolutionary forefathers, AB-T celebrates the founding of Katipunan through Diwa ng Kasarinlan on July 27, 2013.

Diwa ng Kasarinlan is a celebration of our assertion for genuine Philippine independence and continuing our fight for People’s true rights and freedom. It will provide workshops on leadership, arts, and community empowerment. Also, as part of ABT’s dedication on educating Filipino youth regarding the plight of the Philippines, various socio-political discussions will also be featured.

Come celebrate Filipino pride that comes from our history of epic struggle.

#DnK 2013 Volunteer Call Out

Anakbayan-Toronto is still looking for dedicated and energetic youth to make this historic event happen.  In the lead-up to the event, we need people to help with pre-DnK events, marketing, physical setup, ushers, etc. Working together is a great way to meet others who also hold the passion and the resilient spirit that the Filipino struggle is remarkable with.

Contact us at anakbayan.toronto@gmail.com with the subject line #DnK2013 and let us know your interests.

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Anakbayan Toronto
To get your tickets for FREE please register at http://dnk2013.eventbrite.com/


Makibaka! Huwag Matakot!

May Day 2013: Decent Work is Hard Work

Filipino youth group Anakbayan-Toronto (AB-T) and other mass-based organizations under the waving banner of BAYAN-Canada march with workers, local community organizers, and peoples around the globe as part of the International Workers Day on May 1st, 2013.

Since it was formalized as an international holiday in 1891, May 1st is a day of coordinated action for workers rights and struggles, for quality living and working conditions, as well as a just workplace system. Radical agitations are resonated in the midst of capitalist uncertainty and austerity.

In the Philippines, the first movement launched more than 100,000 workers on May 1, 1903 led by the Union Obrera Democratica. Segue to 1988, Southern Tagalog region experienced one of the most violent and bloody demonstrations, where high-caliber guns were indiscriminately fired to protesting workers.

At present, despite its much publicized outperformance of its neighbouring countries in Asia, the Philippines under Benigno Aquino III is not able to provide sufficient jobs and the education system cannot equip its expanding labour force with the skills needed for its own industries. The “rising star” economy has significantly increased the fortunes of a narrow clique of Filipino business tycoons by $13 billion to $47.4 in 2011-2012. The country now has total of 15 billionaires while poverty incidence remain unchanged. Three Filipinos out of ten are living under $1 per day.

In search of decent work, many Filipinos are forced to move from rural to urban areas with a large portion opting to go overseas. The pipeline for more than 5,000 people to leave the Philippines for work has ever expanded.

Meanwhile, immigration minister Jason Kenney keeps on drawing in labour force via temporary foreign workers, who are being used and abused to maintain depressed wages for both Canadians and landed immigrants. Among the 1.3 million unemployed in Canada, nearly six workers are available for every job vacancy.

In Canada as in the Philippines and around the world, the fast-growing young labour force is having a hard time to find the jobs that are commensurate with the skills they are educated. Figures are even worse on young people who are not employed, educated and no training at all. As well, many of the employed young are working informally or intermittently. The youth are so tired of low wages and long hours.

This is where our interests lie: the masses of migrant workers which constitute a chunk of the working class to be stronger than it has ever been. The boiling frog in the melting pot of Toronto should be awakened.

Together, we must stand firmly to acknowledge that the profit-driven system is not working for the people. We must raise our voices to articulate the language of communism beyond the canon of liberal democracy. We must march forward to appeal for a strong movement in the face of antagonisms.

Toronto May Day 2012

As part of the Filipino community, AB-T recognizes the need to eliminate the exploitation of migrant workers. We are so stoked of the fact that normalcy is beginning to lose its hold. But without the upshot of genuinely addressing the problems of underdevelopment and agrarian reform in the Philippines, we cannot fully effect change to our situation. And without the support of our allies, we would never succeed.

Regardless of the ever-shifting socio-political problems created by capitalism, the general spirit of militancy among working peoples continue during this great and historic day.

DARE TO BUILD A SOLIDARITY CITY, DARE TO WIN!
LONG LIVE MAY DAY!
WORKERS AND OPPRESSED PEOPLES AND NATIONS OF THE WORLD, UNITE!

 All are welcome to join the BAYAN contingent on May 1st:
5:30PM: Start of Program Nathan Phillips Square
6:00PM: Rally along Queen Street to Bathurst to Little Norway Park

For more information, please contact:
Ysh Cabana at anakbayan.toronto@gmail.com or (416) 902 2551.

ABT Statement on Aldaw ti Kordilyera (Cordillera Day) 2013

Can a revolutionary indigenous culture break capitalism’s momentum?

Is it imaginable that our indigenous youth who have been born in Canada or have been hyphenates, claim that they can empower themselves today through their decolonizing psychology, practice and constant self-identity? Can culture alone allow the next generation to come to the fore as active participants in shaping our times?

Sisters, brothers, comrades and kasamas, revolutionary greetings from the youth section of progressive Filipinos in Canada.

The roots of the struggle of the indigenous peoples had resulted in a push by the American regime for direct control over the Cordillera region. The solution to the US Great Depression of the late 1920s was contracted in the mineral-rich mountains the Philippines. This would mean the start of “the real gold rush,” which had been in slack primarily because of the panned resistance to the Spanish conquistadors by the disparate peoples. This would mean that the northern region was the predestined subject of “benevolent assimilation” and cultural disparagement.

American colonial authorities propagated the idea of a pan-Cordillera identity and the meaning of a single “Igorot” inhabiting the highlands to separate them from their lowland counterparts and pacify them. This homogenous regional consciousness was used to constitute America as modern to justify its imperialist occupation. In the turn of the 20th century during the Louisiana Purchase Exposition, descendants of tribal peoples were put as ‘living exhibits’ — especially the Cordillerans whose main draw was their custom of eating dog meat. However, prior to their coming, these peoples were richly diverse, as is still now, in different terms.

Our history has taught us lessons that are very significant to our present identity. The role of instituted policies have demonstrated us how ethnic imaginings are constantly constructed and reconstructed. It is precisely the clash of interests that shape the dynamics of history.

Has the bourgeois government in Manila ever effected a progress without dragging away peoples through dirt and blood, forced disappearances and forcible dispossession from their domains?

Perennial mining disasters and controversial mining impacts including those by Canadian firms operating in the homeland show us clearly: the 1996 Marcopper tragedy in the small island-province of Marinduque, whose main waterway Boac River was declared not usable even after more than 10 years since the mine closed; then 2005 Lafayette mine which caused cyanide spill and fish-kill off the coast of Albay, in which local fisherfolks’ livelihood and health were devastated; and most recently, the Philex tailing pond leak which is probably the largest mining tragedy in the Philippines, causing displacement of thousands of our brothers and sisters from the Cordillera region.

From north to south, indigenous peoples must arise out of the fact that their formal equality only covers up their real inequality.The concentration of economic and political power among a few families should not be an acceptable option to the majority Filipinos. Our people in the diaspora must also stand firmly on the question of sovereign land in the context of impoverishment. Altogether, we must ultimately allow healing the economic wounds inflicted by peripheral capitalism by pushing for true democracy and national industrialization.

Cordillera Day gives us a chance to reflect the sacrifice that have been made by our fallen hero Macli-ing Dulag. This day also should make us act on behalf of our indigenous compatriots who have been disappeared such as James Balao and politically imprisoned like Kennedy Bangibang. Culture of impunity persists after the extrajudicial killings of Romy Sanchez, Albert Terredano, Pepe Manegdeg, Jose Doton, Markus Rafael Bangit and Alice Claver. Against the backdrop of centuries-old culture of resistance of indigenous peoples, justice has not been served to these human rights defenders.

We, together with the people of Cordillera, do not sit idly by as we continue to ward off capitalists who plunder their lands and lives for the benefit of the monied few. We will keep exposing and opposing the complicity of Canadian corporations in this conflict. We reaffirm our fight for land which is life and for life that is the land.

We at Anakbayan-Toronto are in solidarity with the people of Cordillera! Down with imperialism, bureaucrat capitalism, and feudalism!!!

CRIMINALIZATION OF DISSENT Land Defenders, Human Rights and Political Activists are imprisoned!

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The judicial system and the rule of law are being used as instruments of state violence

Peoples around the world who organize and resist the onslaught of colonial land theft, extractive industries, and state repression are arrested and indefinitely being kept in prison as a strategy to silence their voices and crush their struggles to assert their right to self-determination and sovereignty.

On the occasion of Palestine Political Prisoners’ Day

A PANEL DISCUSSION

IN SOLIDARITY WITH POLITICAL PRISONERS AROUND THE GLOBE

Please join us to hear these stories, identify common strategies and discuss effective community responses.

Featuring:
* Issam Alyamani (Executive Director – Palestine House)
* Francine “Flower” Doxtator (Six Nations Land Defender)
* Jaroslava Avila (Women’s Coordinating Committee For a Free Wallmapu [Toronto])
* Krisna Saravanamuttu (Coalition for Tamil Rights)
* Perry Sorio (former Political Prisoner; current Vice-Chairperson – Migrante – Canada)

***Also be a special guest speaker on the issue of Security Certificates in Canada ***

Co-organizers: Coalition Against Israeli Apartheid (CAIA), Coalition for Tamil Rights (CTR), Latin American and Caribbean Solidarity Network (LACSN) and the Philippine Solidarity Network – Toronto (PSNT)

Endorsed By: CUPE Ontario International Solidarity Committee; Greater Toronto Workers Assembly; Bayan – Toronto; Canadian Arab Federation; Centre for Social Justice; Migrante – Canada; National Council of Canadian Tamils (NCCT); No One Is Illegal; Palestine House; Socialist Project; Students Against Israeli Apartheid (SAIA -UofT); Students Against Israeli Apartheid (SAIA – York U); Toronto Bolivia Solidarity; Tow Row Society.

For further information: Logan Sellathurai: justice5@sympatico.ca

***How to Spit FiYAh in Bisaya!!***

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***How to Spit FiYAh in Bisaya!!***

Interested in learning a different language? Want to know more about the Bisaya language? Kamalayan presents “How to Spit FiYAh in Bisaya”!! It is a FREE language class that will teach you how to construct basic sentences and engage in a conversation.

The creator and facilitator of this workshop is Haniely Pableo. Poster created by Althea Balmes and Tim Manalo.

Please contact anakbayan.toronto@gmail.com or call Rhea at 647.281.0652 to confirm your spot!

Space is limited!!!

Where: CSI Regent Park, 3rd Floor, Daniels Spectrum Building, 585 Dundas Street East
When:  Saturday, April 20, 2013 at 4:30-6pm

SINONG TATAY MO?!? A History of Family Dynasties and Corruption

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[FREE History Workshop | Open to All | Space is Limited]
Why is Philippine Politics So Corrupt?
Why do family dynasties persist in a supposedly democratic, and supposedly independent Philippines? And what does history teach us about the potential for real change? … This will be a one hour history talk matched with one hour of discussion.
We will look at how family dynasties came to dominate Philippine politics, economics, and pop culture.  We will also look at the many attempts to overturn this climate of corruption.  Where were there successes and where were there failures, and why?
In discussing corruption we’ll also examine why this corruption is not an unfortunate side effect but a necessary tool to maintain the status quo… and along the way examine some of the dark chapters–like how the CIA was born in the Philippines to crush post WWII attempts at a truly independent country…
You can email us to confirm your spot: anakbayan.toronto@gmail.com Or you can also just drop in! (Space is limited, emailing us confirms your spot.)

Pinoy Pick-up Lines… and When Not to Use Them!

Jericho Pick Up

A FREE Kamalayan session…

PINOY PICK-UP LINES
…and when not to use them!
A conversational Tagalog lesson

“Kadiliman ka ba?  Kasi wala akong ibang makita pag nandyan ka.”

Depending on who you’re trying to talk to, this line might work or be a total flop.  Learn how to strike up and maintain a conversation in social situations, understand Filipino humour, and learn how to use the right combination of attitude, melodrama and cheesiness that is uniquely Pinoy.

For more info, email anakbayan.toronto@gmail.com or Facebook Link: https://www.facebook.com/events/481608418559415/?fref=ts

FREE EVENT! Unity in the Philippines: A Unique Perspective

Activate T.O. Speaker Series presents Unity in the Philippines

Friday, February 22, 2013
7:00pm until 10:00pm
Centre for Social Innovation, 720 Bathurst St. (Bloor and Bathurst)


The Philippines today is the largest source country for migrants to Canada. Filipinos are a cheap, well educated, and disposable workforce–at least in the eyes of the Canadian government…

Our five panelists will discuss how they became involved in the Philippine People Power Movement and why the movement is not just for Filipinos but Canadians too.

The panelists include:

Alex Felipe is currently the Toronto Spokesperson for BAYAN-Canada, a chapter of Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (BAYAN) in the Philippines.

Jesson Reyes is currently the Secretary General of a militant student group, Anakbayan Toronto.

Rhea A. Gamana is the Chairperson of Anakbayan-Toronto.

Petronila G. Cleto is Secretary-General of GABRIELA Ontario, a chapter of GABRIELA-Philippines. GABRIELA

Nicole OliverInternational League of Peoples’ Struggles (ILPS) & GABRIELA

Light food and drink provided!

Activate T.O. is a free, non-academic speaker series showcasing political activists and community outreach practitioners in Toronto

Lumalakas! Lumalawak! Lumalaban!

Youth-student organization Anakbayan hold’s the founding assembly of their Toronto chapter to advance the people’s struggle of the Philippines


A message from Anakbayan Toronto Organizing Committee:

In the spirit of the youth revolutionaries of Bonifacio and the pre-Martial Law youth organization of Kabataang Makabayan, the Anakbayan Toronto Organizing Committee warmly invites all our allies, other chapters, those in the struggle, other youths and the community at large who share the passion and interest of activism, to the founding assembly of the Toronto chapter of Anakbayan.

Anakbayan is the comprehensive, national democratic mass organization of the Filipno youth. It was established on November 30th 1998 to unite the youths from all sectors of the society: workers, migrants, students, out-of-school youth, women, professionals, Indigenous, Muslim, Christians, peasant, fisherfolks and many others, to advance the cause of national democracy of the Philippines and liberalization from foreign imperialism.

The theme for the inaugurating general assembly is set as Magbunyi ang Kabataan Patungo Sa Malayang Bukas (Celebrating the Youth Marching Towards Emancipation) to acknowledge the Filipino youth’s continuing history and commitment to arousing, organizing and mobilizing their community. Filipino youths have had their share of the fight from demanding justice for Filipino youth like Jeffrey Reodica, to tackling the effects of the Live-in Caregiver Program (LCP) on the youth and their family, to forwarding and making the national democracy movement of the Philippines relevant to other Filipino youth in Toronto. The inauguration and the first general assembly meeting of Anakbayan Toronto is a step closer to making the voices of Filipino youth stronger and be heard; and make the youth be the leaders of their community to continue the struggle towards a genuine independent Philippines.

Join the Organizing Committee on December  01 2012 and be part of building the new chapter. Everyone is welcome.

Event schedule includes:

  • History of Youth Organizing
  • Situating the Youth in the Philippines and Canada”
  • Reading of the Constitution and Bylaws and Election of Officers
  • Our Allies and their Messages of Solidarity
  • Cultural Presentation

Anakbayan Toronto Founding General Assembly-
Ipagbunyi ang Kabataang Sumusulong tungo sa Malayang Bukas
(Celebrating the Youth Marching Towards Emancipation)

SCC 115, Student Centre, Ryerson University
December  01, 2012; 6-12 pm

FREE event
Space is wheelchair accessible

Film Screening: The End of Immigration?

Here’s an event being co-organized by Migrante Ontario.

FILM SCREENING: “THE END OF IMMIGRATION?”
Saturday, October 20, 2012
6:30 p.m.
Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE), Room 5-150
252 Bloor St. West (@ Bedford Rd.) (map)
Free event | Donations welcome.DIRECTOR: Marie Boti and Malcolm Guy || 2012 | 52mins | English/French subtitled | Trailer: https://vimeo.com/49887882

In Canada, when we think of “temporary workers,” the image that comes to mind are the seasonal agricultural workers who have been toiling in our fields for the past 40 years, or the live-in nannies and maids from the Philippines. But these days, temporary foreign workers are found in all sectors: fast food, service stations, city bus drivers in Calgary, janitors in Edmonton, and even riggers on the CBC telecommunication towers in Montreal.

Canada, a country with a reputation as a “land of immigrants,” appears to taking its cue from places like Hong Kong and Saudi Arabia, places that run on temporary foreign workers.

The one-hour TV documentary The End of Immigration? uncovers a trend which is having a major impact on the type of country in which we live, one that relies increasingly on “rent-a-workers” rather than immigrants, a process that could spell the end of immigration as we know it. Today, the number of temporary workers arriving each year in Canada far exceeds the number of immigrants.

By comparing the situation of these temporary workers with that of their own parents who arrived in Canada as unskilled workers in the last century, the filmmakers uncover a hidden world that’s as close as the MacDonald’s on the corner. And they ask the crucial question: is this the kind of society we want to build?

Filmed in collaboration with community groups, unions and advocates across Canada and internationally, The End of Immigration? takes the pulse of a movement challenging the system that turns workers into global commodities.

* * *

Almost twenty years ago Marie Boti and Malcolm Guy started a series of three films about temporary migrant workers to Canada. One, Modern Heroes Modern Slaves, broadcast on CBC Witness, was awarded Best Investigative Documentary by the Canadian Association of Journalists. The films featured a particular program known today as the Live-In Caregiver Program (LCP) that brings in foreign domestic workers to Canada. Since then, this program has been widely challenged and exposed as discriminatory and open to abuse.

When the Canadian government, rather than repealing the program, shifted recently to broadening its demand for temporary foreign workers, Boti and Guy felt compelled to come back to a subject they know well.

Produced by Lucie Pageau and distributed by Diffusion Multi-monde
Screening organized by Migrante Canada and United Food & Commercial Workers

Human Rights in the Philippines: A Continuing Struggle

Panel Discussion: Tuesday, 16 October 2012 from 6 to 8pm (please note that we will start promptly at 6pm)
Location: Room 280N, 2nd Floor, York Lanes, York University (Keele Campus), 4700 Keele Street
Photo Exhibition: Scott Library, York University, Ground Floor Lobby between the circulation desk and the Map Library.  

Refreshments provided, All are welcome.

In September 1972, democratic freedoms were suspended in the Philippines when President Ferdinand Marcos declared martial law. Tens of thousands of Filipinos were arrested and imprisoned. Although martial law was lifted in 1981, the struggle for human rights, democracy and development continues into the present. Even today, over 300 political detainees remain imprisoned and extra-judicial killings have been widespread.

Marking the 40th anniversary of martial law, a panel of former political prisoners and activists will tell their own stories of detention and describe the ongoing struggles against human rights abuses in the Philippines. The panel is intended to connect youth with the histories of struggle undertaken by their parents’ generation, and to raise their awareness of contemporary human rights issues in the Philippines.


Panelists:

Ricky Esguerra
 – former political prisoner; Philippine Solidarity Network; Vice-Chair for Education, Community Alliance for Social Justice, Toronto.

Hermie Garcia
 – former political prisoner; Editor, The Philippine Reporter; President, Community Alliance for Social Justice.

Bern Jagunos
 – Asia Program Coordinator, United Church of Canada.

Perry Sorio
– former political prisoner; Secretary-General, Migrante Canada.

Discussant:

François Tanguay-Renaud
– Associate Professor, Osgoode Hall Law School; Director, Nathanson Centre on Transnational Human Rights, Crime and Security, York University.

Moderator:
 
Alex Felipe
– BAYAN-Canada, Toronto.

Organizer:
 
Philip Kelly
– Director, York Centre for Asian Research

Sponsored by: 

York Centre for Asian Research, York University
Nathanson Centre on Transnational Human Rights, Crime and Security, York University
Migrante-Canada
Community Alliance for Social Justice
BAYAN-Canada

For more information, contact ycar@yorku.ca.

—————————

PHOTO EXHIBIT ||| From Martial Law to Today: Human Rights in the Philippines

Martial Law was declared in the Philippines on 21 September 1972. This year marks its 40th anniversary. While it was officially lifted in 1981, its echoes continue to reverberate in the country today. This exhibition features images from the martial law period and modern times, from the point of view of human rights and democracy activists. The goal is to both educate about that period, and to show that government corruption and human rights abuses are still rampant.  The exhibit is curated by, and features the photographs of, Alex Felipe.

***This exhibition can be seen in the Scott Library at York University, Ground Floor Lobby between the circulation desk and the Map Library. The exhibition will run for three weeks beginning 2 October 2012***

Operation Lifeboat: Linking Canada and The Philippines via (Un)Natural Disasters

Operation Lifeboat: Linking Canada and The Philippines via (Un)Natural Disaster
Public Event · By Operation Lifeboat
Wednesday, October 3, 2012
6:30pm until 8:30pm
The Central, 603 Markham St. (near Bloor & Bathurst)
*** This is a free public event.***
*** Food and drinks can be purchased from The Central. ***We are following up the inspirational performance art fundraiser by Sulong Theatre with a casual mixer/discussion around the themes raised by Operation Lifeboat.

Join us at The Central Bar (next to Honest Eds, on Markham and Bloor) as we discuss:- How ‘natural’ are the disasters hitting the Philippines?
– How does it link to Canada’s economic and migration interests?
– How can we as Canadians help?Speakers will include:
Yshmael Cabana of Anakbayan-Toronto on government inaction in its urban planning.
Alex Felipe of BAYAN-Canada on Canadian mining interests. Alex’s work on Canadian mining in the Philippines won an honourable mention in the Canadian Magazine Awards.
… and more …

Schedule:
545pm-630pm: Dinner/Drinks/Mingling
630-9pm: Discussion (dinner/drinks still available)
9pm onwards: Event ends, but people can stay and hang out if they want.

========

Watch vids from the OpLifeboats 24 hour event here: http://www.sulongtheatre.com/watch-the-live-stream.html

***donations are still being accepted on the site as well***

Canada & the Phils: Corporate Greed, Human Rights, and Migration

CANADA & THE PHILIPPINES: CORPORATE GREED, HUMAN RIGHTS & MIGRATION
Tuesday, October 25, 2011
6:00-9:00pm
Occupy Toronto, St. James Park
Corner King & Jarvis Sts.

Join us this Tuesday when ANAKBAYAN Toronto will speak to the General Assembly at Occupy Toronto about the Occupy Philippines movement, as well as give a workshop at Free Skool on the ties that bind Canada and the Philippines together.

We will discuss:

  • Occupy Philippines
  • a brief summary of Philippine and Fil-Can history
  • Canadian Corporate (ir)Responsibility in the Philippines
  • Filipino Migration (Filipinos since 2007 have been the #1 source of both immigrants and temporary workers to Canada)
  • and we will answer questions.

Join us!

Brown is Beautiful, Part 1

The Kamalayan Filipino Konsciousness Series

BROWN IS BEAUTIFUL – Part 1
Wednesday, September 21, 2011
6:30-9:30pm
The Central, 603 Markham St., Toronto
(@ near Bloor & Bathurst)

The Brown is Beautiful campaign aims to make-visible the many facets and types of “beauties” that are present within Filipina-Canadians as defined and brought to life by a diverse group of Filipina-Canadians v.s. continuing to allow stereotypes/lenses/views of how society, Philippine/Canadian culture- whoever else, to tell us how to be beautiful.

The series will culminate with the Brown is Beautiful campaign kick-off festival which hopes to use multi-media artwork (i.e. spoken word, poem, painting, play, story, life-experience to share) from Filipina-Canadians who will express the topics discussed in the series.

The campaign aims to uplift and affirm the multi-faceted stories and faces of Filipina-Canadians in order to show, and reclaim how brown is beautiful!

Join the discussion as we share our experiences in the first part of the Brown is Beautiful! Series. Together we’ll look at the way popular culture view Filipinas and Asian women in general, dissecting the contexts that have informed these perspectives of us!

China vs The Philippines? The Spratly’s and the Philippines Natural Wealth

The Kamalayan Filipino Konsciousness Series, with the Community Alliance for Social Justice, and the Philippine Press Club-Ontario, presents

CHINA VS. THE PHILIPPINES:
The Spratlys and the Philippines’ Natural Wealth
Friday, August 19, 2011

6:30-9:00pm
Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE)
Room 5260, 252 Bloor St. West, Toronto
(near St. George subway station)

“We must let the world know that we are ready to protect what is ours,” Pres Aquino.

China, the Philippines, and Vietnam are amongst those laying claim to a small group of islands off Palawan… apparently there is oil… to be had, and where there’s oil good times are just around the corner.

Recently things have begun heating up with the Philippine President upping the rhetoric, and China flexing its military muscle.  Add to this the international campaign led by FilAms and we have an interesting situation on our hands.

It has been claimed that the oil there could help alleviate poverty in the Phils and that this is a question of national sovereignty.

Join us on Fri 19 Aug and let’s explore this issue.

What is this really about?

Is this really about national sovereignty?  Because if it is, we should explore if our nation truly is sovereign.

Oil is only one of the abundant natural resources in the Philippines, how about the others?

What is the relationship between our nat’l resources and profit/poverty?

Speakers:

Joe Rivera, writer and former lawyer.

Bern Jagunos, United Church of Canada and the Philippine Solidarity Group of Toronto

Alex Felipe, a photographer who documented large scale mining in the Philippines

Organized by:  Community Alliance for Social Justice (CASJ)  *  Kamalayan  *  Philippine Press Club-Ontario (PPCO)

Filipino Youth: Where are We Going?

Photo credit: Angie Torres

The Kamalayan Filipino Konsciousness Series presentsFILIPINO YOUTH: WHERE ARE WE GOING?
Thursday, June 16, 2011
6:30-9:00pm
Last Temptation, 12 Kensington Ave., Toronto (map)

Filipinos have been immigrating to Canada en masse since the 1960s. As young Filipinos, either born here or abroad, we continue the Filipino diaspora. How are we doing?

Join us as we dive into the current economic and social state of young Filipinos in Canada. Our guest speaker, Dr. Philip Kelly, is a York University professor whose research focuses on “Filipino transnational migration and labour market experiences in Canada, and the transformative effects of migration on economic, cultural and political life in the Philippines.”

Come to discuss where we are now and where we are going.