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

1471228_546074848813492_2049006796_n

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

###

Advertisements

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!

 ———————————-

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.

-30-

For tickets, please check
dnk2013.eventbrite.com

For more info feel free to contact us:

anakbayan.toronto@gmail.com

Imagehttp://www.anakbayanto.org

 

Toronto Filipino youth group slam security overkill of poldet Ericson Acosta

Youth group Anakbayan-Toronto condemns the illegal arrest and overkill security measures of political prisoner Ericson Acosta who recently granted a furlough to seek medical attention.

With the campaign of organizations such as human rights group KarapatanSELDA and other international groups, temporary release has been granted for poet-activist Acosta, who displayed symptoms of serious health problems which may have been the effect of torture. However, he received brutal treatment even while undergoing medical treatment.

According to the Free Ericson Acosta Coalition, a broad alliance supporting the detainee, 10 full-armed personnel from the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP) were stationed at Acosta’s hospital room not only to guard him but to make sure that he is handcuffed to his bed at all times.

Acosta is a poet, thespian, songwriter, and intellectual activist who has been arrested without a warrant since February  2011 by armed troops. He was tortured inside the military camp before being charged of illegal possession of explosives. He has since then been suffering from injustice as his case is still pending in court for 23 months. His parents, Mr. and Mrs. Isaias P. Acosta, despite their own health conditions, have been continuously calling for their son’s release.

Acosta’s case is one in more than 400 political prisoners in the Philippines today, most of them victims of arbitrary arrests, torture and trumped-up criminal charges. More than 120 of them, including the imprisoned writer, were arrested under President Noynoy Aquino’s watch.

Anakbayan-Toronto calls for the unconditional and omnibus amnesty to be granted to Ericson Acosta and to all political prisoners.

Free Ericson Acosta!!
Free all Political Prisoners!!

Sign the online petition at  change.org