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Queensland News Views Insights Life - Making a Difference

LETTY STEVENS-b-w-online








The Queensland Filipino-Australian Women Achievement Awards (QFAWAA) 2013:  Media Launch


Background of QFAWAA Series of Events :  The 5-yearly event  of the Queensland Filipino Women Achievement Awards (QFAWAA) quest is now on in its 3rd Series for QFAWAA 2013 Nominees/Award Recipients. The QFAWAA Series of Events was initiated in 1999 by then incumbent Philippine Ambassador to Australia, H. E. Delia Domingo Albert, inspired by her concern about the negative image of women of Filipino background in Australia, mainly due to unfavourable treatment in the media. Her concern was shared by a group of women at a meeting in June 1999 who decided to form themselves as a Taskforce responsible for the implementation of the Ambassador’s idea.  The successful awards project in Queensland became a Model which later on was adopted in some Australian States. The QFAWAA Series is in cooperation with the Office of the Philippine Consulate General of Queensland under the Auspices of the Ethnic Communities Council of Queensland (ECCQ) Ltd. 

Hence, the Founding Taskforce Advisory Committee for QFAWAA 2000 was created with five Members which included Sr. Mila Castillo, FMM, Chair of the Taskforce, Mr. Alan A.C. Grummitt, Hon. Philippine Consul General, Queensland; Committee Members Sr. Necitas Esguerra, FdCC; Ms Reena Gabutero Gallardo Johnson, Asst. to the Philippine Consul General;  Loida Lapuz Morante, Treasurer; Letty Rulloda Stevens Vendramini, Secretary and Media; Noemi Furlonger, and Associate Member, Mila Rush who later came on board and volunteered her services with the QFAWAA 2000 Team.


The initial PURPOSE of the QFAWAA 2000 as envisioned by then Ambassador Delia Domingo Albert was therefore to raise the profile and status of Filipino migrant women in Australia and/or women of Filipino heritage in Australia by recognising their productive contributions.  


Based on this context, QFAWAA 2013 heralds a positive Message:  Let’s Celebrate the Queensland Filipino-Australian Women Successes by appreciating and nominating these women who make a big difference, and motivate the Filipino-Australian women to serve as role models in the culturally diverse community.  The Initial QFAWAA 2000 Awards/Gala Night was a New Millenium Event in Celebration of the Jubilee Year 2000 held at the Plaza Ballroom, Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre, 142 Merivale Street, Southbank, Brisbane, Queensland.  on Saturday, 11 November 2000, 6:30 for 7:00pm. There was a total of 53 Nominees. Seven of them emerged as the Outstanding Filipino Women Achievement Award Recipients 2000 in their professions, business, community and/or public service, pastoral care, and other activities which benefit the State of Queensland and Australia as a whole, and who have consistently raised the status of women over a considerable period of time. Awardees were chosen by a Selection Panel (Board of Judges) of 8 Members including the Philippine Consulate General, Mr. Alan A.C. Grummitt, and five other Judges coming from diverse sectors of the Queensland Government. The 7 Filipino Women Achievement Award Recipients 2000 were Connie da Cunha, Dr. Eva Abal, Maria Lourdes Barrios, Aurora Briones Foster, Jennifer Yunsay Welk, Dr. Tessie Tumaneng Diete, and Edel Suede. 


The 2nd QFAWAA 2006 Gala Night with then H.E. Ms Cristina Ortega, Philippine Ambassador to Australia was held on 20 May 2006 also at the Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre. Ms Connie da Cunha, one of the 7 Filipino Women Achievement Award Recipients 2000 held the position of Chair for the Taskforce QFAWAA 2006.  There were 30 Nominees.  Current QFAWAA 2013 Chair, Dr. Evelyn Ybarzabal was one of the Award Recipients.


The QFAWAA 2013 Media Launch will be held on Saturday, 10 November 2012 at the Casablanca Restaurant, 52 Petrie Terrace (Cnr Caxton Stree), Brisbane. Payment of $37.00 per person includes Registration and Dinner. Launch Program includes Registration of Guests at 6:30pm followed by singing of National Anthems at 7:00pm, and Welcome Address by QFAWAA 2013 Chair, Dr. Evelyn Ybarzabal.  A  Keynote Speech at 7:10pm will be delivered by Philippine Honorary Consul General, Mr Alan A.C. Grummitt, then a Special Guest’s Speech by the Lord Mayor of Brisbane, Mr. Graham Quirk.   Dr. Eva Abal will give her Inspirational Speech.  Dinner is served at 7:30pm with Entertainment.  At 8:30pm, the Unpacking of the Nomination Kits by Evelyn Ybarzabal and Myrla Prianes, QFAWAA 2013 Secretary will take place, then a Vote of Thanks. QFAWAA Taskforce 2013 will undertake at 9:00pm the Distribution of the Nomination Kits to Guests.


The current QFAWAA 2013 Taskforce Team includes four of the QFAWAA 2000 and 2006 Filipino Women Achievement Award Recipients, two Founding Taskforce Advisors, three Award Recipients and four Nominees. The current 2013 QFAWAA Taskforce Team includes:  Dr. Evelyn Ybarzabal, Chair; Myrla Prianes, Secretary; Flor Birkett, Treasurer; Connie da Cunha, Consultant; Letty Rulloda Stevens Vendramini, Media Coordinator; three other Media Members - Reena Gabutero Gallardo Johnson, Edel Suede (QFAWAA Award Recipient 2000), Nini Seilaff and Emma Smallwood, both  Nominees for  QFAWAA 2006.  Support Group Members are Jorge da Cunha, Carl Singson, Franco Vendramini, Letty R. Vendramini, Reena G. Johnson, and Marie-Louise Singson.


The Taskforce for QFAWAA 2013 invites everyone to nominate deserving Filipino women to be QFAWAA 2013 Nominees and or/Award Recipients.  Nomination Kits will be distributed  during the QFAWAA Launch on the 10 November 2013.  Further developments for the QFAWAA 2013 Launch and Awards Night are in progress. There is no specific timeframe yet for the QFAWAA 2013 Gala Night.  Media Team will give you further updates in the future.


Filipino Radio Program 4EB-FM Interview with QFAWAA 2013 Media Team:  Mr. Erwin Cabucos, Convenor and Broadcaster of the Filipino Group, Radio 4EB-FM organised on his 10:00-11:00pm Radio Broadcast on 10 October 2012 an Interview with three of the 4 Members of the QFAWAA 2013 Media Team.  Members interviewed were Ms Reena Gabutero Gallardo Johnson, Nini Seilaff, and QFAWAA 2013 Media Coordinator Ms Letty R. Stevens Vendramini.  Each Media Member gave her input regarding various areas of interest on the QFAWAA 2013 Event. Some particular questions were directed to individual Media Members. At some stage of the interview, Mr. Cabucos also specifically asked Media Coordinator Letty R. Vendramini the Criteria for QFAWAA Nominees.  Ms Vendramini replied by enumerating four Criteria, and copies of the Criteria and other relevant pieces of information for the QFAWAAA 2013 Nomination Form will be enclosed in the Nomination Kits to be distributed at the QFAWAA 2013 Media Launch come 10 November 2013.  Ms Reena Gallardo Johnson specifically gave and discussed details of the Media Launch in November; Nini Seilaff also talked about her experience as one of the QFAWAA 2006 Nominees. There was a round of relevant Questions & Answers among the Media Team and 4EB-FM Broadcaster, Mr. Erwin Cabucos which was both informative and interesting for listeners to know.


As already written and explained in this write-up, it answers Erwin’s questions on HOW the initial QFAWAA 2000 Event came about, WHY it is important to hold the QFAWAA Series of Events, and WHAT future Nominees expect to do to become future Nominees of QFAWAA 2013. We informed Mr. Erwin Cabucos that more pieces of information will be given in the Information Packages/Kits to be made available and distributed to future Nominees attending the QFAWAA Media Launch on 10th Nov as detailed above.  Mr Cabucos thanked us for the QFAWAA 2013 Media Team Interview, and likewise, the QFAWAA Media Team also thanked Erwin for inviting us to discuss vital information regarding QFAWAA 2013 Media Launch and QFAWAA Gala Night for public knowledge through his Radio Broadcast at 4EB-FM from 10:00-11:00pm. 


To ALL future QFAWAA 2013 Nominees/Award Recipients, we wish you all the BEST!  FOR NOMINATION ENQUIRIES, PLEASE CONTACT YOUR NEAREST TASKFORCE 2013 MEMBERS:  Brisbane, Ipswich and Mt Isa – Evelyn Ybarzabal on 0401 228 082, email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.; Gold Coast, Darling Downs, Toowoomba, Gladstone and Rockhampton – Myrla Prianes on 0458 752 219, email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.; Pine Rivers Shire and Gympie – Flor Birkett on 0438 320 648, email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.; Sunshine Coast and Cairns - Nini Seilaff on 0408 764 977, (07) 4928 0800, email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


If you are interested in Sponsorship Package for Gold, Silver or Bronze Levels, or Donation, please contact Dr. Evelyn Ybarzabal, Chair, QFAWAA 2013; her contact details above.  Thank you!

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