Evelyn Zaragoza

Evelyn Zaragoza

 

President of Plaza Filipino, Inc. Michelle Baltazar is no stranger to the struggle of being a migrant in a country such as Australia, using her experience to guide her mission to bring her traditional culture down under.

When the Philippines Consulate General of Sydney asked her organisation to put together an event for some of the top sustainable Filipino designers, she couldn’t resist the opportunity to showcase the innovation her ancestral country has taken in the fashion industry.

Michelle said she decided to help put the event together when the Consulate mentioned they would be working with an indigenous Filipino community from South Cotabato in Southern Mindanao.

“The magic word they used to really reel me in was ‘Tboli', which is the name an ancient tribe in the Philippines that is little known, and it was a passion of mine to just showcase them and their amazing work,” Michelle explained.

In support of these indigenous communities, Michelle and her team said part of the funds from the expo would be donated to them to support their weaving of traditional fabrics.

Also supporting the communities living in regional areas of the Philippines is WorldRemit, who have partnered with local Filipino businesses from Aparri to Jolo to ensure receivers can instantly pick up cash remittances without having to travel so far or worry about an internet connection. These businesses include Palawan Pawnshops and Cebuana Lhuillier.

“I send a lot of money back home, maybe half my salary, and like most Filipinos, a lot of my family still lives over there and it will certainly continue to be part of my lifestyle to be able to send money back for special occasions,” Michelle said.

Last year, the Philippines was WorldRemit’s largest receive market globally, with the company processing around 180,000 transactions to the Southeast Asian nation each month. According to the company’s research, education was the number one reason for people to send money back to the Philippines, with women sending around 2% more on average than their male counterparts.

Michelle said it is also important to educate people living in Australia more about the culture in the Philippines because it forms a major part of the diverse culture in the nation, particularly in New South Wales, which is currently home to over 40% of the Filipino diaspora in Australia.

To help people like Michelle continue to showcase the Filipino culture in Australia and support the people back home, WorldRemit is proud to offer NO FEES on three transactions to first-time customers who use the promo code 3FREE. For further information, click on the following link: http://bit.ly/threefreemphil

Wednesday, 27 June 2018 03:08

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PCHN Editor in Chief Evelyn Zaragoza catches up with Polo De'Marco Magazine Founder and Editor-in-Chief Mike Anganngan during the recently held Search for the New Face of Polo De'Marco held at the Sir Stamford Hotel, Sydney. Mike contributes then to PCHN and he flew in from Monte Carlo to Sydney for the event.

PCHN Editor in Chief Evelyn Zaragoza presenting a memorabilia to retiring ambassador Minda C. Cruz

 

From 2 July 2018, there will be a New Child Care Package. The Package will help parents with children aged 0 – 13 work, train, study and volunteer. The Package includes a new Child Care Subsidy, which replaces the current Child Care Benefit and Child Care Rebate. It will be paid directly to services.

Find out more: education.gov.au/childcare

Leading digital money transfer service WorldRemit is always on the lookout for local heroes around the world, and Australian-Filipino entrepreneur Marco Selorio is just one stand-out of many. He is currently working with communities in both nations to connect talented youngsters to their various cultural Philippine identities through a mutual love of dance and music.

 

In his wildest dreams, Marco never thought organising a community dance event for his brother’s crew would turn into a worldwide phenomenon. He certainly never imagined the huge impact the event would have in connecting young Filipino dancers to others just like them from around the world.

Marco has always had a passion for business. After graduating from economics and commerce at ANU University, he handed his degree to his parents and began his first entrepreneurial venture called Hoopdreamz, coordinating basketball and community events for Filipino-Australians.

However, it was organising a life-changing urban dance event for his brother’s hip-hop crew that ignited an annual calendar of dance events, becoming a celebration for Filipino families to celebrate and connect with their youth.

“Kids loved the music and the family vibe and parents were comfortable being there with their kids,” Marco said.

“They really enjoy that atmosphere, the families and communities coming together to be entertained by the talent in the community.”

After a successful two years, Marco took his events business, known as MAS Presents, to the next level by organising the first World Supremacy Battleground dance competition in Sydney, which saw masses of Filipinos come together to support their favourite teams. This was just the beginning of the global expansion, allowing the event to reach six continents in 2015. However, Marco stills believes he has so much more to offer to the youth of the Philippines, believing this is one of the reasons why he has maintained such a strong connection to his country of birth.

“I really like going back because the environment is so different to Australia and it excites me more to do events over there,” he said.

Currently, Marco estimates the event has featured around 73,000 dancers since its inauguration in 2002, with Filipino talent having seen success both in Australia and around the world. It is now a global platform providing recognition for the dancers and musicians, and in some cases work and prize money for entertainers from disadvantaged backgrounds.

“The Filipino community really get behind the dancers, they are especially loud for those from their home city and their province and some of the teams who have won gold have become TV stars and they get recognised,” Marco said.

“It gives them a lot of exposure and they get a lot of opportunities, and at the same time, it gets them out of the streets, so instead of hustling drugs, the competition keeps them focused and away from those vices.”

Marco also said money people send to the Philippines is essential in helping to break the youth out of the poverty cycle, explaining that even a small amount helps.

“What someone might earn in an hour as a salesperson here in Australia, would be what someone would earn after an entire day of work in the Philippines in the same job,” he said.

“I think a lot of Filipinos send money back home, and the ones who migrate from the provinces often tend to send more money.”

Digital money transfer company WorldRemit has realised this need to better service the Philippines and they now offer a wider reach to regional areas through instant cash pickups at local businesses such as the Palawan Pawnshops. In 2017, an estimated AUD$1.8billion of remittances were sent to the Philippines from Australia in total, and in the same year, the Southeast Asian nation was WorldRemit’s largest receive market globally.

Despite most of his family having now migrated to Australia or the USA, Marco continues to remit money home to support any of his extended family members with their education.

To continue to support people like Marco who send money overseas to their family and friends, WorldRemit has made the process of sending money even easier by offering three free digital transactions for first-time users of the money-transfer service by using promo code 3FREE.

Marco also said money people send to the Philippines is essential in helping to break the youth out of the poverty cycle, explaining that even a small amount helps.

“What someone might earn in an hour as a salesperson here in Australia, would be what someone would earn after an entire day of work in the Philippines in the same job,” he said.

“I think a lot of Filipinos send money back home, and the ones who migrate from the provinces often tend to send more money.”

Digital money transfer company WorldRemit has realised this need to better service the Philippines and they now offer a wider reach to regional areas through instant cash pickups at local businesses such as the Palawan Pawnshops. In 2017, an estimated AUD$1.8billion of remittances were sent to the Philippines from Australia in total, and in the same year, the Southeast Asian nation was WorldRemit’s largest receive market globally.

Despite most of his family having now migrated to Australia or the USA, Marco continues to remit money home to support any of his extended family members with their education.

As a result of Marco’s efforts in the Philippines, the nation has recently been sending their most talented dancers as national representatives for the international competitions, with these dancers winning a number of the divisions, demonstrating the power of the arts in the nation.

The connections and relationships these competitors form between fellow dancers helps engage the youth with cultures around the world. For the Filipino-Australian community, Marco said there is one thing the Filipino people draw from both cultures, influencing how they work and assimilate into society.

“Learning about the Australian culture, we always give it a go and we are always are on the go,” he said.

“That’s the kind of attitude I have learnt here in Australia, and it works both ways because I am able to maintain the morals and values of being a Filipino, but I get the best of both worlds being here.

“I do feel proud to be Filipino, even though Australia is my home.”

The influence of cultures has helped young dancers develop stronger connections with their Filipino cultural identity, and rather than disconnecting they are plugged back into their ancestral home.

These global connections are also supported by companies such as WorldRemit, who are constantly looking for ways to strengthen relationships among Filipino communities across the world. Their service provides an easy way for Filipinos to send money to their family and friends living abroad by using a smartphone, tablet or computer.

WorldRemit is also proud to offer three fee-free transactions to first-time customers who use the promo code 3FREE to help the Filipino community continue to support their family and friends living overseas. For further information, click on the banner below:

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