A broad alliance of Filipino Canadian associations has emerged to articulate the diverse interests of the community in B.C. Called the United Filipino Canadian Associations in B.C., it is composed of major associations , representing a broad range of concerns across the community. UFCABC passed with flying colours in its first major undertaking, which was the 2015 celebration of Philippine Independence Day.
With the leadership of the UFCABC, members of the community held a well attended celebration of Philippine Independence Day at Vancouver’s Slocan Park on June 6.
UFCABC President Joel Castillo confirmed 78 associations and business establishments supported and joined the parade, set up tents and tables during the whole-day Pista ng Bayan affair that included food and entertainment.
“I feel proud of what we have achieved,” Castillo said. “It’s a very encouraging sign of what the future holds for us. I’m confident that we can do more.” Castillo is also encouraging more associations to join and support future activities.
“With unity, we are able to accomplish more for the community,” Castillo said.
The Slocan Park on June 6 gathering lived up to its traditional Parada ng Lechon feature, with 20 lechon or roast whole pigs donated for the occasion. Politicians and Consul General Neil Frank Ferrer, with the full force of the Consulate office, joine the event.
To cap the celebration this year of Philippine Independence Day, a gala and dinner was held on June 13 at the Crystal Ballroom of Pan Pacific Hotel in Vancouver.
Almost 500 people attended the evening affair, wearing their Barong Tagalog & Filipiniana customes, including Consul General Neil Frank Ferrer with his wife Mirriam, Deputy Consul General Anthony
Mandap and wife Mary Ann, Consul Bong Villanueva and wife Anna, Cultural officer Jo Nacisvalencia and spouse Jesse, MP’s Alice Wong and
Wai Young and MLA Mable Elmore and special guest was Congresswoman Estrelita ‘Ging’ B. Suansing of Nueva Ecija.
Amado Mercado, UFCABC Advisory Board said “This is one or maybe the biggest Gala dinners I attended since I arrived in Vancouver in 1989, This shows that the Filipinos in BC can unite.“
The highlight at the gala and dinner is the oath taking of officers conducted by Consul General Neil Frank Ferrer.
They are : President: Joel Castillo
Vice- President: Rey Fortaleza
Secretary: Janice Lozano Secretary; Merlina Fayusal
Treasurer: Shailene Caparas
Treasurer: Mary Ann Velayo
Auditor: Rene Alcantara
Auditor: Dante Aviso
Press Relations Officer: Lita Nuguid
Sgt-at –Arms: Ceasar Forteza
Sgt-at -Arms: Leo Ocampo
Business Managers: Cliff Belgica, Salve Dayao, Mirasol Kahila, Jean Joseph
DIRECTORS: Amado Mercado, Jr. Annie Jalac Miles
Arcie Lim Ching Colobon Perla de Peralta Trenee Lopez
Honorary adviser: Jose (Joey) Ampeso
Victoria Representative: Annette Dumalo Beech