Filipino young professionals volunteer for a project in Queens

by Kobakila News

NEW YORK (Apr. 28) — It’s not about the movie or the situation comedy TV series aired in CBS in the late 60’s that drove people to Queens Museum of Art in Flushing Meadows Corona Park in Queens on April 19, 2009.

Rather it was an event called A Family Affair organized by Bagong Kulturang Pinoy, New York (BKP-NY) where families and groups of children participated in a fun-filled day of face painting, arts and crafts activities and cupcake decorating.

And Collaborative Opportunities for Raising Empowerment Inc. (CORE), an organization that seeks to provide an avenue for socio-economic involvement to build a stronger Filipino American community, gave its members and friends the opportunity to be involved and partner with BKP.

About 15 of its members and friends volunteered in BKP-NY’s outdoor activities which also included a book signing by Sue Anne Morrow, author of Everett the Incredibly Helpful Helper and book readings by librarian Lori Tauches of the New York Public Library’s Muhlenberg Branch.

“This is definitely a great way to kick-off National Volunteer Week.  I am glad to see our members are having as much fun as the children,” said Venessa Manzano, CORE’s Vice Chair of Membership Services.

“Since CORE’s primary goal is empowering young professionals – like today’s volunteers — through collaboration, this is a perfect opportunity to support a group such as BKP-NY,” she added.

For her part, Lorna Mesina-Husain, board member of the newly formed chapter BKP-NY, said the event’s objective was to collect books as well as to raise awareness about community libraries in the Philippines.

“Younger Filipino immigrants are looking for ways to give back.  We are glad that we were able to give them the opportunity to help out this day,” Mesina-Husain said.

BKP-NY is affiliated with the Massachusetts-based non-profit organization Bagong Kulturang Pinoy, Inc. Its shared mission is to develop a reading culture among Filipino children in poverty-stricken areas in the Philippines.  The local chapter was spearheaded by founding board members Mesina-Husain, Fredick Quijano and Michelle Pinzon.

“CORE’s participation allowed us to serve more kids than we could have handled at A Family Affair. It also helped spread our campaign for volunteerism and giving back to the Philippines through our book collection,” added Mesina-Husain.

CorevolunteersFor CORE members Alan Alday, Christopher Arzadon, Yssa Barretto, Carlo Cabanilla, Mark Habana, Venessa Manzano, Roderick Rodriguez, and Nina Talao; and CORE’s friends Lismarys Arjona, Ted Martinez, and Marielle Mendoza supporting BKP-NY and bringing fun to the children was an unforgettable experience.

“The organizers were always available to answer any questions. I also noted how it was possible to gain the resources you need through collaboration and networking with organizations that share your mission,” Alday said.

Indeed their collaborative involvement with BKP-NY was A Family Affair — another found opportunity to achieve its organization’s 2009 strategy to collaborate and empower through engagement and education.

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