The Philippine flag-raising ceremony in Calgary instilled a sense of national pride and unity among the Filipino-Canadian community in commemoration of the country’s 125th Independence Day.
The Council and Assembly of Filipino Foundations and Associations (CAFFA), organized the event, which was attended by the Philippine Consul General Zaldy Patron. The flag-raising commenced on June 12 at the Calgary’s City Hall
Patron expressed his gratitude to Calgarians for their support of the Filipino community in observing and commemorating the country’s independence.
“This event symbolizes that the city’s local government is recognizing and accepting us by allowing us to use the place for the official flag-raising ceremony,” Patron said.
Meanwhile, Ward 7 Coun. Terry Wong demonstrated the city’s unwavering support for the community.
“Filipinos have done a lot to create what Calgary is all about,” said Wong. “I want to thank the community for coming out to celebrate your culture and nation with Calgarians.”
The Filipino-Calgarian Seniors Club brought an energetic presence, adding liveliness and colour to the celebration through their traditional dresses and dances.
“Filipino senior citizens here in the city are trying to show young ones the traditions and beliefs of the Philippines through various ways,” said Irene Porcalla, vice-president of the Filipino-Calgarian Seniors Club.
“The vibrancy of the celebration of the Philippine Independence Day has always been up because of the support of CAFFA and the local seniors’ group,” said Jerry Caingcoy, founder and president of the Filipino Champions of Canada.
Attendees cited various reasons for coming out to witness the proceedings.
“I am for diversity and inclusion,” said Miracle Rivera, a Filipino attendee. “I want to celebrate our country’s freedom with my countrymen.”
Rivera uses pageantry as a platform to promote Filipino culture and heritage, especially to the younger generation.
“I encourage children and youths to participate in this kind of event to learn the essence of this remembrance and realize how rich our culture and history are,” Rivera said.
Much to the joy of the community, Filpinos celebrated alongside people of other nationalities.
“The more I get exposed, the more I come to love this beautiful community,” said Ronald Waters, a Canadian citizen.
Waters emphasized his appreciation for integrating Filipino culture into Canadian society, sewing it into the fabric of the Canadian community.
“If you are a Canadian like me, you will grow, thrive, and blossom because you are connected to the Filipino people.”