The Third Global Filipino Networking Convention

The following FAQ’s were written by me to help the delegates with their travel plans to the Philippines. It was publicized through the website, www.thirdglobalcebu.com. I was responsible for managing the website’s content that served as a successful, “role model”-type organizational and public relations/marketing tool. I have enclosed some of the website’s content here.

This website is now under the domain name www.ThirdGlobalCebu.net.

The Third Global Filipino Networking Convention
January 20-22, 2005
Waterfront Cebu City Hotel & Casino
Island of Cebu, Philippines
www.thirdglobalcebu.com
[email protected]

FAQ’s FOR REGISTRATION & TRAVEL ARRANGEMENTS

Who are the Convenors?

National Federation of Filipino American Associations (NaFFAA) and Cebu Visitors & Convention Bureau (CVCB)

Where do I get more information about the 3rd Global?

You can log on to our website, www.thirdglobalcebu.com or e-mail us at [email protected] Updated information will be featured every week — so check us out weekly and tell your world-wide friends about meeting you in Cebu!

The website will have more updates on travel, tour, and exhibit information by October 10, 2004.

The instructions on this FAQ’s are subject to change without notice so please check the website regularly, e-mail us at [email protected] or call (650) 992-4001 in the United States or (63) (32) 255-1250 or (63) (32) 232-6888 local 8913 at CVCB, Cebu City, Philippines during business hours.

What options do I have in making my registration and travel arrangements?

There are six possible ways.

NOTE: Land arrangements – hotel, round trip transfer in Cebu (airport-hotel-airport), daily breakfast, and registration ($50 by October 31, 2004 & $75 starting November 1, 2004)

1. I want the consolidator’s convention package: land arrangements and airfare.

To do: Ask your travel agent to contact the authorized consolidator in the U.S. or contact the authorized consolidator directly. Authorized sub-agents in the Philippines and travel agents in countries other than the U.S. (who don’t have an appointed consolidator) can book directly with the Philippine Secretariat.

2. I want the consolidator’s convention package but I will be traveling at different dates than the indicated dates on the convention package.

To do: Ask your travel agent to contact the authorized consolidator in the U.S. or contact the authorized consolidator directly. Authorized sub-agents in the Philippines and travel agents in countries other than the U.S. (who don’t have an appointed consolidator) can book directly with the Philippine Secretariat.

3. I don’t need land arrangements. I only need airfare.

To do: Ask your travel agent to contact the authorized consolidator in the U.S. or contact the authorized consolidator directly. Authorized sub-agents in the Philippines and travel agents in countries other than the U.S. (who don’t have an appointed consolidator) can book directly with the Philippine Secretariat.

4. I don’t need airfare. I only need land arrangements.

To do: This is facilitated through the authorized consolidator in the U.S. with a minimal service fee. Authorized sub-agents in the Philippines and travel agents in countries other than the U.S. (who don’t have an appointed consolidator) can book directly with the Philippine Secretariat.

5. I don’t need the airfare, hotel arrangements, airport transfers, and daily breakfast. I want to register for the convention only.

To do: The U.S.-based delegate can register through NaFFAA’s 3rd Global U.S. Secretariat. The Philippine-based delegate or overseas delegate (from a country other than the U.S,) can register directly at CVCB’s Philippine Secretariat in the Philippines. Please print the online registration form at www.thirdglobalcebu.com or mail the registration form from the marketing brochure.

Since there is a different registration rate (in Philippine pesos) for Philippine-based delegates, please inquire at [email protected] for more details. Please note that you will be asked for proof of local residence

Make your check payable to: CVCB (and on the check’s memo line, write “3rdGlobal”)

6. I need someone to guide me on tours and other suggested travel itineraries while I’m there for the 3rd Global. I also have some special requests.

To do: Ask your travel agent to contact the authorized consolidator in the U.S. or contact the authorized consolidator directly. Authorized sub-agents in the Philippines and travel agents in countries other than the U.S. (who don’t have an appointed consolidator) can book directly with the Philippine Secretariat.

What are the procedures for registration and travel arrangements?

A. From the United States

1. Fill out the registration form on the 3rd Global’s marketing brochure or online at http://www.thirdglobalcebu.com/content/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=15&Itemid=37

2. Contact your travel agent (who will be calling the authorized consolidator for your area) or call the authorized consolidator for your area directly to facilitate the registration process, travel arrangements, tours, and customized itinerary. Submit your completed registration form with the payment.

Since the authorized consolidator will be the one to collect payments from the travel agent and remit the registration and land arrangement payments to CVCB, please ask for guidance from your travel agent or authorized consolidator if you can pay a “lump sum” payment for registration, airfare, and land arrangements payable to their business name.

In the event that your booking (as a 3rd Global delegate) is made directly to the Philippine Secretariat (CVCB), the booking will be noted but will be forwarded back to the respective consolidators in charge of processing the registration and travel arrangements.

3. You will receive a confirmation of your registration/booking from your travel agent or consolidator once the remittance of your payment reaches CVCB. Please indicate if you would prefer to receive your confirmation by e-mail, fax, or mail. Only bookings with payment will be given priority confirmation.

4. All confirmed bookings that are cancelled shall be subject to cancellation fees according to a schedule agreed upon by CVCB and the authorized consolidator.

5. We will be posting your names (with city and country) on our website to confirm your registration. You can start networking before you even start leaving for Cebu. If you wish to contact any of the other delegates before the convention dates, please e-mail Lorna Dietz, Executive Coordinator, at [email protected] or call her at (415) 235-9884 (no text, please) or text her at (0927) 331-3879. Lorna will forward your e-mail or message to the person you wish to contact.

B. From the Philippines and countries other than the U.S.

1. You can ask an authorized sub-agent from the Philippines or your travel agent in countries other than the U.S. (who are not appointed a consolidator for the 3rd Global) to book directly with the Philippine Secretariat.

2. Booking and payment procedures for your bookings will follow the same steps indicated for consolidators.

3. There might be special procedures used to facilitate and confirm your booking so please inquire from CVCB regarding the registration process.

How do we contact the 3rd Global Secretariats in Cebu and the U.S. for more information?

U.S. Secretariat

Greg Macabenta
2005 Organizing Committee Chair
3rd Global Filipino Networking Convention
GBM Building
1580 Bryant Street
Daly City, CA 94015
(650) 992-4001 phone
(650) 992-4002 fax

Philippine Secretariat

Cebu Visitors and Convention Bureau
Waterfront Cebu City Hotel & Casino
1 Salinas Drive
Lahug, Cebu City
Cebu, Philippines
Contact: Marcie Abesamis at (63) (32) 255-1250, (63) (32) 254-7850 fax, or [email protected]
Contact: Jenny Franco, 3rd Global Organizing Committee’s Project Director or Shana Siap, Assistant to Jenny Franco, at (63) (32) 234-1463 or (63) (32) 234-1282, (63) (32) 234-1463 fax or at [email protected] Alternate contact: Bernadette Jingco at (63) (32) 255-1250, (63) (32) 254-7850 fax, or [email protected]

3rd GLOBAL’S WEST COAST CONVENTION PACKAGE

Although we are in the final stages of fine-tuning the operational
details of the convention package, you can now start planning your
trip. Tour packages will be included in registration materials later.
We’re still finalizing the fliers and website links. You can direct
your friends to www.thirdglobalcebu.com for basic information. E-mail
inquiries to: [email protected]

We’re giving you an idea about the travel package of the West Coast
(given by the Cebu Visitors & Convention Bureau’s assigned West Coast
consolidator, Travelfast International). Please watch out for updates
on the travel arrangements that the assigned consolidators for Hawaii,
Mid-West (Central & South West) and East Coast States. We will also
update you on the other countries’ delegates travel arrangements so
you can forward it to your friends.

PROCEDURE: The travel agent handling the West Coast attendee’s travel
arrangements calls Travelfast International at 1-800-2-MANILA
(1-800-262-6542) to facilitate the reservation. Ask for Ella or Nonette. [email protected] or [email protected]

If your flight originates from another city in the West Coast, please
indicate this to your travel agent.

4 DAYS/ 3 NIGHTS CONVENTION PACKAGE – $ 999

INCLUSIONS:
- round trip Los Angeles/San Francisco – Cebu ticket on Philippine
Airlines
- hotel accommodations for 4 days/3 nights in Cebu
- round trip transfers in Cebu
- daily breakfast
- early bird registration of $50 (before Oct. 31, 2004)

Prices quoted are per person based on double occupancy.
Departure valid weekdays, 16 Jan – 18 Jan. Add $30 for weekend travel.
Taxes and surcharges not included.
Ticket validity: Min. 6 days/Max. 2 months
Stopover in Manila valid inbound direction only.
Extra night with breakfast.

Package must be purchased and paid for by October 31, 2004. Add $25
after deadline.

* * *
For departure cities ATL / CHI / DFW / HOU / MIA / NYC / WAS / BWI /
TPA / PHL / STL / BOS – Please ADD $200 per person (tax not
included)

Note: Although we have a consolidator assigned to the East Coast, the
additional pricing here is helpful information.

* * *
The $999 package is for a Superior Room at Waterfront Cebu City Hotel
or a Standard Room at Tambuli Beach Resort.

There are other packages available that Travelfast International feels meets our requirements (twin share):

$ 979 – Deluxe room at Montebello Villa Hotel
$ 959 – Superior Room at the Cebu Grand Hotel

Customized vacation packages are available for the other hotels (twin share):

Marriott Hotel, run-of-the-house – $1,009
Plantation Bay Resort & Spa, Water View Room – $1,089
Shangri-la Mactan Island Resort, Garden View – $1,109
White Sands Beach Resort, run-of-the-house – $1,009
Maribago Blue Waters, Superior – $1,039
Cordova Reef Resort, Single Deluxe – $1,089
Costabella Tropical Beach Hotel, Sea View Suite – $1,039

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SAMPLES OF WEBSITE CONTENT

Brief – NaFFAA, CVCB, and the 3rd Global Filipino Networking Convention

The National Federation of Filipino American Associations (NaFFAA) is the largest federation of Filipino community organizations in the United States. It is a non-stock, non-profit, non-denominational, and non-partisan entity whose objectives are to empower Filipinos in America, and to enable our community to become active contributors to American society and to the Philippine Motherland.

Our National Chair is Loida Nicolas-Lewis, CEO of TLC Beatrice and one of the most respected women entrepreneurs in the U.S. Greg Macabenta is our National Vice-Chair and 2005 Organizing Chair of the 3rd Global Filipino Networking Convention that will be held at the Waterfront Cebu City Hotel & Casino, Island of Cebu, Philippines, on January 20 to 22, 2005. Greg owns and manages an advertising agency, publishes and edits a newspaper, and writes a column for Business World, the leading business daily in Manila. Our founding chairman, Alex Esclamado (founder and former publisher-editor of Philippine News), holds the title of Chairman Emeritus. We have a full-time Chief of Staff, Armando Heredia, who manages our office in Washington D.C.

NaFFAA has twelve (12) chapters, representing all the 50 states in the U.S. We are regularly invited to briefings at the White House and on Capitol Hill, as well as the respective state houses covered by our chapters, on issues affecting ethnic and minority communities in America, and have been actively advocating Filipino interests, such as equity for Filipino World War II veterans.

The Global Filipino Networking Convention was born out of a desire of NaFFAA to expand our horizons beyond the U.S., to include Filipinos in other parts of the world. We believe that, by networking, we can more effectively promote our mutual welfare and become a more potent force in helping the Philippines.

The 1st Global was held on August 31-September 1, 2002 in San Francisco, California, at the Moscone Center. Most of the delegates were from the U.S. The 2nd Global, sponsored by the Department of Tourism, was staged at the Philippine International Convention Center in Manila from December 15-18, 2003. We had significant participation from Filipinos from countries in Europe, Australia, the Middle East, and Asia.

The resolutions resulting from the 2nd Global, when presented to President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, prompted her comment that, for the first time, convention participants were not asking the government for anything but, in fact, were offering to do something for the country.

Among the resolutions was the proposed formation of a Global Federation of Filipino Associations, to link all of us who have been dispersed around the globe. It is an ambitious project but well worth pursuing.

The developments encouraged us to schedule the 3rd Global Filipino Networking Convention in the Philippines – this time, in Cebu City, immediately following the world-famous Sinulog Festival in that city. The Ati-Atihan Festival in nearby Aklan is also held in January.

Loida Nicolas-Lewis is chair of the Executive Committee of the 3rd Global. Other members of the ExCom are Alex Esclamado and Rodel Rodis, a prominent San Francisco lawyer and trustee of the San Francisco Community College Board. Aside from Greg Macabenta, the 2005 Organizing Committee Chair, and Viki Bamba, 2005 Organizing Committee Vice-Chair and NaFFAA-Northern California’s Regional Chair, the Secretary General is Patrick Gregorio, chair of the Cebu Visitors & Convention Bureau (CVCB) which is the co-convenor of the convention. Jenny Franco, who heads one of CVCB’s member organizations, Travelvision, as its Managing Director and serves as President-Cebu Chapter of the National Association of Independent Travel Agencies (NAITAS), is the 3rd Global’s Project Director. Cebu-born Lorna Lardizabal Dietz, a USA-based publicist and NaFFAA-Northern California’s Communications Director, is the Executive Coordinator. CVCB and DDB Philippines share marketing responsibilities in the 3rd Global’s national sponsorship offerings.

Cebu Visitors & Convention Bureau (CVCB), our co-convenor, was initially formed to assist the 17th Advertising Congress organizing committee in 2000. Patrick Gregorio, its founding chair, is also the President of the Waterfront Hotels. As the first and only private sector-led, non-stock, non-profit tourism organization committed to promoting Cebu as the best domestic and international convention and events destination in the Philippines, CVCB is recognized by the state-run Philippine Conventions and Visitors Corporation as its marketing partner in Central Visayas. CVCB has 130 member companies and individuals to-date. Dawnie Roa, Region 7’s Department of Tourism Director, is one of members of CVCB’s Board of Trustees.

One very good reason for staging the 3rd Global in Cebu is its reputation as “number one” in tourist arrivals in the Philippines. The relocation of the main offices of the Philippine Department of Tourism in the latter part of 2004 strengthens Cebu’s central location and prominence as a leading destination. Once the DOT transfer materializes, Patrick said that they would implement what he calls an “insulated marketing strategy,” that is, “insulating” an island from factors such as peace and order threats, a strategy that was adopted a few years ago. After the “insulation” process is completed, CVCB will be able to focus on promoting Cebu as an international market and “attaching” other tourist destinations to Cebu.

Some of the committees’ members, such as Loida Nicolas-Lewis, Greg Macabenta, Alex Esclamado, and Patrick Gregorio are scheduled to make trips to Europe, Australia, Asia, Canada, and the Middle East. The purpose is to encourage active participation of fellow Filipinos who have built new lives in their adopted countries. Loida’s recent visit to Paris, France, for example, was also an occasion to extend the same invitation to the Filipino-French community.

We, overseas Filipinos, have often been referred to as “The New Heroes,” on whose shoulders the economy of the Philippines depends. But we also face many problems and are eager to have our share of many opportunities that seem to elude us in our adopted countries. These are among the issues that we would like to address at the 3rd Global. But most of all, we would like to meet and network with our fellow expatriates in what has been described as “A Gathering of Heroes.”

Greg wrote some lyrical verses in English and Tagalog to express the sentiments of the 3rd Global Organizing committee. The ultimate objective, of course, is to persuade to send a large delegation to Cebu.

— — — —

A GATHERING OF HEROES

Where are all my children –
The blood of my blood, flesh of my flesh,
The fruits of my dreams?
Where are the saplings who drew strength from my roots?
The flowers who bloomed from the dew of this land?
They have sailed away with the wind,
In the beaks of swallows
Seeking warmth on distant shores.
On the wings of eagles
Daring to soar to boundless heights.

Come ye my children,
Blood of my blood, flesh of my flesh,
The sweet, ripened fruits of my dreams.
Come ye from far and near,
And hearken to my call.
Come tell us of your triumphs.
Celebrate your conquests,
Bask in the glow of my pride.
Then plant the seeds of your successes
In the soil from which you sprang.
And offer a share of your golden harvest.
At the altar of a grateful Motherland.
Come. Come.
Come for a gathering of heroes.

Nasaan ang mga anak ko –
Dugo ng aking dugo, laman ng aking laman,
Bunga ng aking mga pangarap?
Nasaan ang puno na umusbong sa aking mga ugat?
Ang bulaklak na namukadkad sa lupang tinamnan?
Sila’y lumayo, naglayag sa hangin
Sa bibig ng mga ibong hanap ay pagpupugaran,
Sa pakpak ng mga agilang inaabot ang kalangitan.

Halina kayo, mga anak ko –
Dugo ng aking dugo, laman ng aking laman,
Matamis na bunga ng aking mga pangarap.
Halina kayo mula sa malalayong dagat.
Dinggin ang aking panawagan.
Isalaysay ang inyong kadakilaan.
Ipagbunyi ang talino’t gilas.
Tanggapin ang aking parangal.
At pagkatapos, magtanim ng binhi
Ng inyong tagumpay
Sa lupang inyong pinagmulan.
At mag-alay ng bahagi ng gintong ani
Sa dambana ng mahal na Inang Bayang.
Halina. Halina.
Halina kayo sa pagbabalik ng mga bayani.

— — — —
Greg B. Macabenta
National Vice-Chair, NaFFAA &
Chair, 3rd Global Organizing Committee
C/o Minority Media Services, Inc.
GBM Bldg., 1580 Bryant St.
Daly City, CA 94015, U.S.A.
Tel. (650) 992-4001/ Fax (650) 992-4002
[email protected]
[email protected]

Who’s going to Cebu for the 3rd Global?
- Check out the 3rd Global brochure!

*

Telltale Signs/ CRY POOR ME ARGENTINA

[Rodel Rodis’s weekly column is found in Filipino American publications such as Philippine News, Ang Panahon, Manila Bulletin USA, and inq7.net.]

While the world was transfixed by the athletes of the Summer Olympic Games in Athens, and while Americans were pre-occupied with the politics of the Democratic and Republican national conventions, Filipinos were arguing about the Philippines becoming the next Argentina.

No, they weren’t talking about how the country’s basketball team will win the Olympic Gold Medal in Beijing 2008 as Argentina did this year in Greece 2004 while trampling over the American Dream Team.

Argentina was on the minds of Filipinos when they heard President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo announce last week that the Philippines was now in a “fiscal crisis”.

The stark facts were bared for all to see: as of the end of 2003, the Philippine government owed P3.36 trillion pesos ($60-B), the equivalent of over 70 percent of the gross national product or GNP of the country. A little less than half or P1.65 trillion ($29.7 billion) is owed to foreign banks, while P1.7 trillion is owed domestically.
Included in this enormous debt is the $2.3-B that Ferdinand Marcos borrowed in 1984 to build the Bataan Nuclear Power Plant, costing three times more than a comparable plant built in South Korea. After acquiring the money, Marcos fled the country in 1986 and later in that year, international inspectors examined the Bataan power plant and found it to be unsafe and inoperable. The plant was built along several earthquake fault lines, perilously close to the then-dormant Mt. Pinatubo volcano. The Filipino people are stuck with paying interest in the amount of $155,000 a day for this nefarious loan.

In 2003, the government paid P231 billion pesos (more than $4-B) just for the interest on the outstanding debts, representing about 28.4 percent of the entire government budget. This year, interest payments will zoom up to P272 billion or 31.4 percent of the
government budget. Add the interest payments to the principal this year which will be P271 billion, up from last year’s P195 billion, and the grand total is a staggering P542.2 billion ($8-B) in debt payments for 2004, which will take up 81 percent of the government’s revenues. This is the total of all the official money remitted to the Philippines annually by overseas Filipinos.
My high school classmate, Ciel Habito, a PhD in Economics from Harvard, explained that this means the Philippines is able to use less than one out of every 5 pesos of revenue collected by the government for current needs. “Think of the poor wage worker deep in debt who is met by his friendly neighborhood shark lender on payday who takes away FOUR-FIFTHS of his pay envelope.”

Seven years ago, Ciel explained, “the total debt service was only P125.6 billion, taking up just 26.6 percent or about one out of every 4 pesos of revenue collected, leaving us still 3 out of 4 pesos collected to spend for current needs. It was actually in the last three years when the debt service burden accelerated most rapidly, jumping from 44.3 percent in 2000, to 75 percent in 2003, and now 81 percent. Clearly, something has gone terribly wrong.”

At this rate, UP economists warn, the Philippines will face the same fate as Argentina in 2 – 3 years.

In 2002, Argentina faced a “full-blown depression” with the country’s output (real gross domestic product or GDP) falling 28 percent between 1998 and 2002. The Argentinian peso, held fixed by the government at one peso to one US dollar since 1991, was
devalued in early 2002 to nearly 4 pesos to the dollar. (It would be the equivalent of the Philippine peso going from 50 pesos to a dollar to 200 pesos to a dollar.) Inflation, which had been low or even negative since the early1990s, shot up to 41 percent in 2002. Unemployment doubled from 12 percent in 1998 to 24 percent. Poverty incidence shot up from 25.9 percent in 1998 to 57.5 percent in 2002. These economic conditions led to bank runs which closed down Argentina’s banking system.

The Philippines is not Argentina yet, my high school classmate assured me by pointing to the Argentine government’s failed effort to artificially maintain the Argentine peso on par with the American dollar. The Philippines allows the market to determine the peso’s relationship to the dollar. But alas, unless immediate steps are taken, the country can cry poor me, Argentina.

President Arroyo’s declaration that the Philippines was in a fiscal crisis was probably aimed at winning support in Congress for new taxes to pay off the ballooning foreign debt. The proposed new taxes would raise an extra 80 billion pesos ($1.4 billion) in revenues a year while creating annual savings of 20 billion.

But her announcement resulted in the Philippine exchange rate going up and the Philippine stock market going down, prompting the government’s economic officials to scramble to play down the alarm sounded by the President’s declaration. “We are not in a fiscal crisis,” assured Secretary of Trade and Industry Cesar Purisima. “The President used the term rhetorically and not technically.”

There is heavy pressure on the Congress to drastically pare down or eliminate altogether its “pork barrel” funds where each senator and congressman is allocated about 40-M pesos a year to spend with as he or she wishes for their constituents.

Filipinos in the US can help the Philippines by making plans to visit the country. A good time to come would be in January to attend the 3rd Global Filipino Networking Convention which will be held in Cebu City at the Waterfront Hotel on January 20 – 22, 2005.

The 3rd Global’s theme is “Pinoy Power Worldwide: A Gathering of Heroes.” The Convention is organized by the National Federation of the Filipino American Associations (NaFFAA) and its co-convenor, the Cebu Visitors & Convention Bureau.

Executive Coordinator Lorna Lardizabal Dietz is working on a package of a round trip fare from the US to Manila to Cebu with four days and three nights at the Waterfront Hotel and registration fee all for $999.

“We believe that honoring Overseas Filipinos as models of empowerment and everyday heroes of achievement,” Lorna declared in her email, “is a festive, momentous event worthy of inclusion in your travel plans. Your side-trip to the Island of Cebu can prepare the group for your primary mission and acclimate them to the local scene or celebrate your accomplishments after the main goal is attained.”

For more information, call 415 235-9884 US or 0927 331-3879 Philippines or email: [email protected]

Send comments to [email protected]

*

Adlib/THE GLOBAL FILIPINO, by Greg B. Macabenta, BusinessWorld September 8, 2004 edition

Source: http://www.bworld.com.ph/current/Opinion/opinion3.html

BUSINESSWORLD, ONLINE EDITION – OPINION

ADLIB

By Greg B. Macabenta

MANILA, PHILIPPINES | Wednesday, September 8, 2004

The Global Filipino

If the vision of the organizing committee is achieved, the 3rd Global Filipino Networking Convention, to be held at the Waterfront Cebu City Hotel & Casino from Jan. 20 to 22, 2005, will not only be the biggest homecoming of overseas Filipinos, it will also be “a gathering of heroes of the Filipino Diaspora.”

Every effort is being exerted by the organizers to keep the 3rd Global from being US-centric. Because the principal convenor of the event is the National Federation of Filipino American Associations (NaFFAA), there is a natural tendency to focus on US-related issues and on Filipinos in America.

As chairman of the organizing committee and as the person assigned to formulate the convention program and to generate delegate participation, I have become increasingly aware not only of the significant presence of Filipinos in the rest of the world, but also of their achievements in their adopted countries.

The convention is a salute to the Global Filipino. For sure, the Filipino became global for many reasons, some of them unflattering. Unfortunately, we know more about the negative aspects of the Diaspora and very little about the positive outcome of the dispersal of our people.

We are still reeling from the impact of the Angelo de la Cruz incident. The story of a Filipino doctor deciding to become a nurse in America in order to make a decent living is an indictment of an economy in shambles. The best of our teachers are taking flight. Years ago, the whole country was outraged by a report that the new edition of the Oxford dictionary had defined “Filipina” as a “domestic.”

I got caught up in that controversy because I happened to be the only one who bothered to look for a copy of that Oxford edition and who explained (in this column) that it was a simple case of misreading. The “Filipina” entry was followed by a separate entry, “fille de chamber” or “chamber maid.”

Frankly, I think we were furious not only because the alleged definition was wrong, but because, deep inside, we felt that it was partly right. Indeed, our self-esteem has been so diminished that, as a defense mechanism, we resort to self-flagellation to preempt any criticism by foreigners.

The 3rd Global Filipino Networking Convention would like to prove that we are better than we think.

A showcase of the convention is a “Gallery of Heroes,” an exhibit that will pay tribute to Filipino achievers around the world.

We want to honor them not only for excelling in their respective fields, but also for demonstrating that today’s Global Filipino has transcended the stereotypes of the illegal alien, the fruit pickers in Hawaii and California, the lowly steward in the US Navy, the bar girl in Japan, the domestic in Europe and Asia, the mail order bride in Australia, and the laborer in the Middle East.

But, lest it be construed that we are demeaning those who appear to match the stereotypes, we intend to honor them, too — because their sense of adventure, pioneering spirit, courage and will to survive built the foundation for those who came after them.

In America, farm workers Larry Itliong and Philip Vera Cruz initiated the protest against labor exploitation that, ironically, has been attributed to Mexican Cesar Chavez. Rear Admiral Connie Mariano of the US Navy is the daughter of a lowly steward who, in her own words, could not enter through the front door of the residence of the senior officer to whom she was assigned. Major General Antonio Taguba, who blew the lid off the Abu Graib scandal in Iraq, is the son of a Filipino World War II veteran. The stories are legion.

Unfortunately, while we can readily provide a roster of outstanding Filipinos in America, there is much that we need to know about the achievers in Canada, Latin America, Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Australia and Asia. We know they are there. And we want to know who they are.

Lisa Yuchengco, publisher-editor of Filipinas Magazine, has agreed to lend us her publication’s roster of annual achievement awardees, concededly the most prestigious in the US. Joe Molano, executive director of the Commission on Filipinos Overseas, has graciously offered to provide a list of honorees in the annual awards conferred by the Philippine government on Filipinos around the world. But we feel that there are many more out there who may not have gained prominence, but who deserve to be recognized.

I would like to ask the readers of BusinessWorld, especially of the online edition, to help us identify these Global Filipino heroes.

We want to honor them. Most of all, we want them to join us in Cebu, actively participate in the convention, network with their fellow Global Filipinos, and share their skills, work ethic and entrepreneurial spirit with the Motherland.

It is about them that I wrote this piece for the 3rd Global, entitled, “A Gathering of Heroes — Pagbabalik Ng Mga Bayani”:

Where are all my children –
The blood of my blood, flesh of my flesh,
The fruits of my dreams?
Where are the saplings who drew strength from my roots?
The flowers who bloomed from the dew of this land?
They have sailed away with the wind,
In the beaks of swallows, seeking warmth on distant shores.
On the wings of eagles, daring to soar to boundless heights.
Come ye my children –
Blood of my blood, flesh of my flesh,
The sweet, ripened fruits of my dreams.
Come ye from far and near and hearken to my call.
Come tell us of your triumphs. Celebrate your conquests.
Bask in the glow of my pride.
Then plant the seeds of your successes
In the soil from which you sprang.
And offer a share of your golden harvest
At the altar of a grateful Motherland.
Come. Come. Come for a gathering of heroes.

Nasaan ang mga anak ko –
Dugo ng aking dugo, laman ng aking laman,
Bunga ng aking mga pangarap?
Nasaan ang puno na umusbong sa aking mga ugat?
Ang bulaklak na namukadkad sa lupang tinamnan?
Sila’y lumayo, naglayag sa hangin
Sa bibig ng mga ibong hanap ay pagpupugaran,
Sa pakpak ng mga agilang inaabot ang kalangitan.
Halina kayo, mga anak ko –
Dugo ng aking dugo, laman ng aking laman,
Matamis na bunga ng aking mga pangarap.
Halina kayo mula sa malalayong dagat.
Dinggin ang aking panawagan. Isalaysay ang inyong kadakilaan.
Ipagbunyi ang talino’t gilas. Tanggapin ang aking parangal.
At pagkatapos, magtanim ng binhi ng inyong tagumpay
Sa lupang inyong pinagmulan.
At mag-alay ng bahagi ng gintong ani
Sa dambana ng mahal na Inang Bayang.
Halina. Halina. Halina kayo sa pagbabalik ng mga bayani.

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Check out the 3rd Global brochure!

click url below to view 3rd Global brochure in pdf format.

http://minoritymedia.com/naffaa/

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