2018-19AA Consul Speech

An unwavering commitment to service and sacrifice

(Message by Consul Manny Guzman of Philippine Consulate General in Sydney, exhorting the works of ANCOP on the occasion of the ANCOP Ambassador Proclamation Night, held in Sydney, 26 May 2018)

On behalf of everyone at the Philippine Consulate General in Sydney, I extend greetings and best wishes to CFC ANCOP on your Ambassador Proclamation Night. What a wonderful evening it has been.

As mentioned during the introduction, I am relatively new to Australia. I just assumed my position as Consul late last year. So I am still very much in familiarization and getting-to-know-you mode. Many people I meet, many organizations I work with, many activities I participate in, I do so for the first time.

Yet from my first day in Sydney, I realized that there’s something special here. It did not take me long to appreciate that there’s a level of joy, passion and devotion from the people living in Australia – the Filipino community in particular - that’s different from other places I’ve been to around the world.

Within my first week as Consul, for instance, I attended successive Filipino community and church events where I was welcomed – for lack of a better way to put it – like a rock star. I was pushed and pulled all around the venues by an endless number of kababayans who wanted to take selfies with me. I may have actually trended on facebook. I soon enough figured out that those raucous Australian receptions were borne not so much out of any sense of celebrity, but were overflow emotions of happiness and satisfaction by the organizing groups – happiness and satisfaction for the hard work that they had put in, for what they had achieved, and for what it meant to be with and help out a friend, a neighbour, a countryman. I was just lucky enough to be in their presence on those days.

Still, it was an unprecedented and stunning experience for me.

Fast forward to this evening, and my first occasion to be with CFC ANCOP, and I express the same wide-eyed astonishment, amazement and utter admiration, not just for your welcome, but for all that you’ve done and for all that you are doing in the region.

I understand that CFC ANCOP has endured and thrived and grown for over 15 years now. This is a strong testament to the values and character of your members. You should easily last for another 50 years, as your group is clearly built on a strong foundation of faith, service, and love of fellow man.

From your early works of building houses for poor families in the Philippines then under the Gawad Kalinga brand, to your development of entire communities with strong and stable families, all the way up to your courageous contributions towards calamity relief and rehabilitation in the Pacific region, I can see that CFC ANCOP has set in place an unassailable legacy.

Yet for all that you’ve done, I get the sense that you still want to do so much more. Indeed, I learned ahead of tonight’s event that your ongoing education and skills training sponsorships benefit nearly 500 students across several countries.

And your Ambassador program is coming off another successful year of spreading the word and work of ANCOP, and is rightfully being celebrated tonight.

From your latest Ambassadors your association will have new enthusiasm and energy to embark on many exciting endeavors. They will propel CFC ANCOP forward, and their experiences will only add to your further spiritual growth, capability and wisdom.

Ladies and gentlemen, the Philippine Consulate was invited to tonight’s event with a request for the Consul to deliver an exhortation type of speech. With due respect, I do not believe that is apt or necessary. The continuing accomplishments of CFC ANCOP are already unquestionably impressive and, to me personally, humbling. Far be it from me, a newcomer to this land and to your company, to lecture on what you already do so very well.

It is self-evident from your work and achievements that you are a special brand of people, one that has righteous ideals, an unwavering commitment to service and sacrifice, genuine selflessness, and the skills and can-do spirit to actually make a difference.

If anything, I would just respectfully invite and welcome the support of CFC ANCOP in various areas of cooperation with the Philippine Consulate, in activities where institutions such as ours which are founded on leadership, values and service can be of most help to the public and to the nation.

The Consulate, for instance, has numerous dialogues and programs relating to labour, migration and education to make as many people as possible aware of their rights and opportunities.

We have broad ranging trade, tourism and investment fora that look to drive people and communities towards a virtuous cycle of progress and prosperity.

The Consulate likewise has extensive linkages with Filipino-Australian cultural and youth organizations in order to preserve and promote our rich and profound heritage, traditions, beliefs and principles.

We have continuing campaigns for Citizenship Re-Acquisition and for Overseas Voting, to maximize the rights and privileges available to Filipinos, and to afford them a greater voice in the future of our country and countrymen.

On all these fronts, the Philippine Consulate and CFC ANCOP would make great natural partners. Again, you have already demonstrated and established that you carry noble ideas and practical solutions. You’ve prayed over your endeavours, kept your intentions good, and acted meaningfully.

It would be an honour for the Consulate to work with CFC ANCOP, and it would be a privilege for us to exhort other groups and gatherings to emulate our endeavours.

We at the Consulate are here to serve the Filipino and the Philippines. CFC ANCOP is here to serve God and our fellow man.

Together, we can bring an even higher level of joy, passion and devotion to Australia, and an overflow of happiness and satisfaction that spans the Philippines and the Pacific.

God bless everyone here, God Bless CFC ANCOP. Mabuhay po tayong lahat!

ThankYou

Message of Thanks from ANCOP

As we start another year, we look back at 2017 with sincere gratitude. We thank all of you who supported ANCOP’s mission with the poor. We are blessed to have new commercial partners as well as having solid support from existing external relationships. We are also grateful for new volunteers joining on their own initiatives to raise funds for our work. In 2017 we had seen a surge of kind-hearted individuals setting up their own ANCOP fund raising sites in the various fun run events throughout the year. Their generosities were doubly matched by donations from their families, friends and colleagues. These fun runs fuelled about 25% of the funds received last year to sustain our work.

We were also pleasantly surprised by the outpour of donations from different activities such as movie events, birthday celebrations, garage sale, cook out, and others. We treasure these events as they also raised awareness out to a bigger audience of the work that we do. Combined with the regular donations from those who pledged towards the continuous education of our beneficiaries, these generous labours accounted 47% of our cash inflow last year.

Lastly, we had our biennial car raffle event last year which generated the remaining 28% of our inflow of funds last year. For everyone who supported our mission through their labour, talent, treasures and prayers, and for our unsung hero-volunteers on the ground who help us run our work in our beneficiary areas, please accept our sincere gratitude and prayers.

With these, ANCOP was able to sustain its work of providing hope through education. In 2017, our partnership of shared scholarship grant with Don Bosco Technological Institute in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea (PNG) officially materialised with seven ANCOP students enrolling in a technical and vocational course of their choice. We also started sponsoring the training of 20 women in Lae, PNG, to a sewing class which they finished in May 2017. With an average age of 40 and educational attainment of Year 9, these women are now inspiration to others that it’s never too late to acquire new skills and become productive members of the community. Shortly after their graduation, a school already contracted them to sew uniforms for students and staff and after that, towards the end of last year, they’ve been engaged by a cement factory to sew cement bags. Yet despite being busy using their new trade for livelihood, these women are so willing to share their blessings and are even volunteering to teach anyone who are wanting to learn the same skill.

Finally, last year we also sponsored the cost of schooling for an additional 48 children in the orphanage of St Martin de Porres in Bulacan, Philippines. This came about after a number of ANCOP volunteers from different states of Australia had an immersion program in the Philippines in January 2017 and had an encounter with our scholars there, as well as their teachers, carers and administrators of the place. The orphanage is home to abandoned and endangered children who end up to be “street kids” of some of Metro Manila’s most notorious cities. The orphanage, about 67 kilometres south of Manila, runs its own school to deter these children from running away again and going back to their old dangerous lives.

Thanks to you, our work goes on and many lives continue to weave better and beautiful stories. We look forward to working with all of you again in 2018. May God bless you all as you allow yourselves to be channels of blessings for others.

Our beneficiaries (end of 2017)

Philippines Papua New Guinea & Solomon Islands
361 Primary, Secondary and Tertiary 12 University
5 Cornerstone classes 30 Diploma, Higher School and Vocational
94 Primary and Secondary
102 Preparatory to School Program (PNG)

 

 

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ANCOP and Forexworld: Delivering love and hope to Filipino families

"Go out there and do your best and know that there are people out in the world who really care about and love you and hope that you become successful through the program (of ANCOP); grab the opportunity with both hands, work hard, and stay positive.”

This is the message of Enrique Campos Jr., Director of Forexworld Australia, to the beneficiaries of CFC ANCOP Australia.  ANCOP is short for Answering the Cry of the Poor and is an Australian charity organisation whose main work is encouraging poor families to strive their way out of poverty through education.

Both Forexworld and ANCOP find congruence in their desire to strengthen the family—connecting and delivering a symbol of their love and presence to the family members left behind in the Philippines.  Forexworld started in 1997 as a cargo business delivering balikbayan boxes catering to Filipinos in Australia who are sending goods back home.  As Campos Jr. said, “…whether it’s Christmas or not, if there is a balikbayan box that arrives, it’s kind of like Christmas again.  Everyone gathers around and open this box full of love as the person here put a lot of time and effort in sending something…”  The company then added money remittance to their business in 2004 for those families here in Australia who are better off, to help their less fortunate family members back home.

Aside from expanding into the travel business in 2009, a few years ago, Forexworld also added food delivery into their remittance product.  Through their partners in the Philippines, Filipino-Australians can now be a part of every family parties and gatherings back home by contributing to the occasion through food like Jollibee and Max’s.

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