BALSA National Relief Caravan for Samar and Leyte
Devastation and initial relief efforts in Panay after Yolanda/Haiyan
Thank you for your overwhelming support/donations!
Kanlungan would like to appeal to the Filipino community in the UK as well the British public to support our long term rehabilitation program. Details of which will be posted here soon.
For more information, please contact our Typhoon Haiyan Volunteer Coordinator:
Mobile: 07808 660819
The relief operations so far (in pictures):
Report of the advance teams of BALSA 14-16 November here
Kanlungan first batch of remittance to RMP here
Kanlungan second batch of remittance to RMP here
November 26, 2013
Filipino groups in the UK relief efforts for victims of Typhoon Yolanda/Haiyan
An emergency meeting of the Filipino community last week was attended by different organisations to consolidate efforts from the community and individuals in the UK. We would like to share with you action points from the meeting.
HERE ARE WAYS YOU CAN DO TO HELP:
- Support Kanlungan Filipino Consortium’s online relief drive
All proceeds will be donated to Rural Missionaries Philippines (RMP), a non-government national organisation very active in disaster response campaigns on the ground. Please check the link for details:
You can donate in a number of ways:
A. Through Kanlungan’s PayPal (reference: Haiyan/Yolanda) here (or button below).
B. Through cheque payable to Kanlungan or via BACS (put reference: Haiyan/Yolanda) to:
Unity Trust Bank
A/C Name: Kanlungan Filipino Consortium
Post cheques to:
Kanlungan Filipino Consortium
Caxton Community Centre
129 St. John’s Way
London N19 3RQ
RMP are also working with other NGO’s and disaster response networks (such as SAGIP Migrante, BALSA, and SAGIP Kanayunan) to ensure that donations go directly to the needy, especially those who are devastated in the hard-to-reach rural areas.
You can check updates of the ongoing relief and rehabilitation here
2. Donate in kind
A. Pio Abad and RJ Fernandez are collecting donations in kind over the next week. The Royal Academy has kindly agreed to serve as drop off point for donations and LBC will send them to the affected areas free of charge
If you can donate any of the following, it will be much appreciated:
- Clothing (for adults and children)
- Flip flops
- Multivitamins for children and water purification tablets
- Torches with batteries
There will be collection boxes at the reception of the Royal Academy Schools (entrance is behind the Royal Academy of Art):
Royal Academy Schools,
London W1J 0BD
Open Monday to Friday 8-9, Saturday 11-4
If you need collection, please e-mail email@example.com.
B. The Filipino Domestic Workers Association (FDWA-UK) are also collecting donations in kind and have started their collection boxes last weekend. The relief goods will be coursed through Migrante International’s SAGIP Migrante
Kindly contact their officers for details:
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org or
Phoebe Dimacali 07400 222600
Shiela Tilan 07557 259146
Eva Mayor 07881 950184
C. LBC Cargo Company free shipping of relief goods to Philippine Red Cross
LBC is requesting to bring the goods to their warehouse in London (North Acton) and they will pack them. They will have a group of volunteers on 30th November 2013 who will organise and pack all the goods. If the donors can pack themselves then it will have to be same items in each box ie: all tin food in a box, etc. LBC said that it’s more manageable if goods are in boxes as once they arrive in the Philippines, Red Cross won’t need to sort them out again.
Red Cross Philippines is discouraging donation of clothes.
Contact LBC at 02031 100 074
3. We encourage setting up your own initiative/relief effort in your local community
A. Lingap Filipino Association’s Christmas Party – 6 Dec 2013
Lingap Filipino Association will be having their Christmas Party and there will be a fundraiser for victims of Typhoon Yolanda/Haiyan
When: 6 December 2013
Where: Umi Hotel, 16 Leinster Square, London W2 4PR
Tickets: Adult £15 / Children 8-12yrs £8 / Children under 8 FREE
Estela 07714 255301
Pina 07912 652626
B. Relief drive at Whittington Hospital, North London – 18 December 2013 until 5.00pm
Donations in cash or kind accepted. Proceeds will go to the Philippine Charity Centre.
C. Philippine Theatre UK’s upcoming events
“From Heaven with Love”
If you’d like to sponsor this event, click here and here
Philippine Theatre UK’s Christmas Party on 15 December 2013
FHWL_Solicitation letter FHWL_Sponsorships and Donations
D. Set-up collection buckets in your hospital or workplace. You can use this for the buckets. Please consider Kanlungan’s beneficiary Rural Missionaries of the Philippines for the proceeds.
NB: If you have any relief effort/initiative you would like publicised or need help with, please contact us
FOR FILIPINO MIGRANTS IN THE UK AFFECTED BY THE TYPHOON:
- Finding lost family members
There are helpful links and tracking services that have been opened which can be useful to you:
Viber and Skype also offer free calls to the Philippines.
Alternatively, you can email email@example.com, text 07538 797963 or message Kanlungan Filipino Consortium on Facebook with as much detail as you can about your relatives including:
Full name, Last known address including Brgy, Contact numbers, etc.
and we will forward them to Migrante International Home Office, which are currently trying every effort to help OFWs find their loved ones. To date, they have reunited 6 OFW relatives from this effort.
- Compassionate leave/extended annual leave/other means of support from employers and your union
Kanlungan, in a press statement, called for compassion for Filipino migrant workers who are affected by the catastrophe.
- If you are a member of a union, please contact your union representative
- If you are a UNISON member, please contact Susan Cueva, firstname.lastname@example.org, 07903024201
- If you are not a member of any union, please contact Kanlungan at email@example.com or call us 0753 8797963 for assistance.
November 18, 2013
Filipino Charity calls for compassion for diaspora workers in time of need
Jamima Fagta, Kanlungan Project Officer, 07538 797 963
Rafael Joseph Maramag, Kanlungan Secretary, 07958 482 753
The world has watched in shock at the destruction caused by the world’s strongest typhoon to ever hit land, centering on the city of Tacloban on the island of Leyte in the Philippines. There are already an estimated more than 10,000 casualties, a number is likely to rise considerably with reports of other communities being completely flattened with few known survivors.
Kanlungan Filipino Consortium, a UK-based Filipino charity working closely with Filipino migrant workers in the UK, is aware that this is a time of great distress and anxiety for our community, whose members are employed in hospitals and care homes or as domestic workers in the UK. They are desperate for news of their families and loved ones. They are aware of the great need which may fall upon them to provide support for family members who have survived this catastrophe, and to help them reconstruct their communities.
“At this time, we believe there is a responsibility for employers to recognise the extraordinary difficulties and pressures on some of their employees from the Philippines, and we call upon them to respond in a responsible and compassionate way,” said Rafael Joseph Maramag, Kanlungan secretary.
Kanlungan calls upon employers to:
- Assist employees with facilities in their attempts to call home, and also to help them to have contact with the Philippines embassy in the UK;
- Provide them with adequate paid compassionate leave to visit home, to attend funerals, to visit relatives in hospital and to support their families in dealing with the wreckage of their homes and communities and the disappearance of their livelihood. These may need to include special arrangements for extended leave going beyond their collective bargaining agreement or employment contract with the assurance of their continued employment in the same position on their return
- Provide where possible financial assistance or loans towards airfares of employees needing to travel home.
As organizations of migrant workers in the UK, we also call upon trade unions to help their Filipino members to negotiate compassionate arrangement with employers to facilitate practical and financial support to their members.
We work directly with local Philippine organizations in the affected areas who are now providing relief on the ground. We would like to ask for your support to these local Philippine humanitarian organizations either through Kanlungan, or directly to these organizations.
SAGIP Migrante: http://migranteinternational.org/?p=3386
BALSA Bayan: http://www.bayan.ph/site/2013/11/balsa-bayanihan-alay-sa-sambayanan/
Kanlungan also notes that the destruction caused by the typhoon in the Philippines, as with last year’s Typhoon “Bopha”, comes at a time when representatives of the world’s governments are meeting in Warsaw, Poland, for the UN climate change conference, COP 19. It is now recognised by many scientists that climate change, through increasing the temperature of the seas, leads to more intense hurricanes and typhoons.
Kanlungan calls on governments to not repeat the previous failures of COP meetings and further derail the already weak multilateral framework on climate change. It calls on governments to agree to ambitious reductions in greenhouse gas emissions, adequate public financing for adaptation and mitigation to climate change, and loss and damage associated with climate change impacts. Kanlungan reminds developed country governments in particular, led by the EU and US, that the UNFCCC treaty states that developed countries must take the lead in combating climate change and its adverse effects. The price of the failue to do this is the continued destruction of lives and livelihoods in countries such as the Philippines.
Kanlungan Filipino Alliance
Campaign for Human Rights in the Philippines UK
Bahay Kubo Housing Association
Lingap Filipino Association
Philippine Theatre UK
Filipino Domestic Workers Association
 COP 19, the Conference of Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change
 See Article 3.1 of the UNFCC
November 13, 2013
17 October 2013
HE Enrique A. Manalo
Philippine Ambassador to the Court of of St James’s
6-8 Suffolk Street
London SW1Y 4HG
Kanlungan Filipino Consortium is an alliance of six active Filipino community organisations and the only national organisation campaigning for and representing the rights of Filipinos in the UK. We wish to express our deep concern on the continuing issues of scam, corruption and blatant misuse of public funds through “pork barrel” and/or other forms of discretionary funds.
Since the public expression of outrage last 26 August 2013 through the Million March in Luneta, which was supported by Filipino im/migrants all over the globe, including Filipinos in the United Kingdom in the light of the 10 billion peso Napoles pork barrel scam, the call for abolition of all forms of lump sum, discretionary funds or “pork” did not waver but rather escalated amidst the uncovering of other forms of questionable discretionary funds such as the Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP) by President himself.
Filipino im/migrants across the globe participated in the Zero Remittance Day on 19 September 2013 to collectively show our dismay on the issue. The subsequent 4 October protest action to scrap all forms of pork was also highly supported by Filipino migrants, who have closely monitored the rising movement ever so intently through social media and the blogosphere.
It is in this light that we request a dialogue with you to formally register our concerns and demands as Filipino im/migrants in the UK in the overall call to abolish all forms of pork, rechannel funds to social services – including services that have been denied, if not massively cut short — for Overseas Filipino Workers and Filipino migrants in the UK and elsewhere and prosecute all guilty parties.
We believe that the pork barrel system or any system thereof which pertains to discretionary funds allocation is, by design, a hotbed for graft and corruption. Introduction of reforms and other stricter mechanisms only foster the illusion of “change.” A real and effective way forward in order to put a stop to plunder and corruption is the outright abolition of all lump sum appropriations in all branches of government. Rest assured that Filipino im/migrants in the UK will play their part in this movement for change.
We look forward to your response.
K A N L U N G A N Filipino Alliance
A registered charity in England and Wales.
Charity Number 1077224
C/o Caxton House
129 St John’s Way
London N19 3RQ
Tel. 020 7263 8992
October 24, 2013
21 August 2013
Jamima Fagta, Project Officer, Kanlungan Filipino Alliance, +447538 797963
Pinoy community groups slams UK’s ‘Go Home’ Vans; joins UK migrant advocacy groups to oppose crackdown
Kanlungan UK[i], the only Alliance of Filipino organisations in the country criticised the UK Border Agency’s controversial ‘Go Home or face arrest’ advert vans which was seen driven around London boroughs with high immigrant community residents last July.
“On behalf of the Filipino community, we register our concern on this racist immigration enforcement by the UKBA,” said Jamima Fagta, the project officer of Kanlungan. “Migrants come to this country for various reasons – and most fall into irregular status or become undocumented due to the unfair changes in immigration policies. Criminalising migrants and creating a hostile environment will not solve the immigration issue but will only create divisions, fear and racial tensions between communities – be it local or migrant,” she added.
Refugee Action, the organisation responsible for administering voluntary returns programme in the UK was “outraged and appalled” by the UKBA’s action. Its chief executive Dave Garrett said that threat of “or face arrest” is counter-effective to its voluntary return programme, which relies on people being supported so that they can make an informed choice about their own future.
Meanwhile, concerned local and immigrant community groups and advocates have begun actions to counter the UK government’s controversial immigration enforcement campaign as “spot” immigration checks targeting foreign-looking people had occurred days after the vans were seen driven around London.
“Kanlungan are in solidarity and extend our full support and commitment in the various initiatives by the Migrants Rights Network, the Waltham Migrants Action Group, Liberty, Refugee and Migrant Forum of East London, among others to ensure that migrants’ rights – whether documented or undocumented — are protected and upheld.” said Fagta.
Workshops and public meeting supporting immigrants and migrant advocates to campaign against crackdown by the UKBA have been on going throughout London, pointing out that ‘speculative’ immigration checks are ‘unlawful’ and subsequently publishing a leaflet on ‘know your rights’ which set out what to do if you are checked on the streets or see a migrant being checked.
Kanlungan Alliance have campaigned for migrants senior care workers who have become undocumented due to the unfair changes in immigration policies in 2006 and still continue working towards the rights and welfare of the immigrant community in Britain.
“We call on Filipino migrant workers and their families to unite with other migrant communities as well as the local population in demanding a stop to the current campaign of intimidation to the im/migrant community by the UKBA through adverts and spot checks,” Fagta ended. ##
August 23, 2013
Download pdf here
April 10, 2013
March 20, 2013
By Patrick Camara Ropeta
LONDON – Filipina migrants from all walks of life united for an open forum to mark International Women’s Day (IWD) last March 8, aiming to create a platform for issues affecting women in the UK and the Philippines.
Dozens of female activists from various UK-based organizations gathered at the Hinsley Room in Victoria on March 9, in a bid to openly discuss and raise awareness of women’s rights and migrant issues of the day.
“We need to move forward to fight for our rights as women and citizens, we can’t just stand in the sidelines,” said Sheila Tilan from the Filipino Domestic Workers Association UK (FDWA-UK), which co-hosted the event with non-profit support group Kanlungan.
“It’s important for us to organize. We should know our rights. We have to mobilize and let all women from the UK to the Philippines to join in the campaign.”
Women’s rights have come a long way since the start of the feminist movement in the late 1900s, but for many women around the world, including vulnerable Filipina migrants, the struggle for equality, safety, and respect remains an ongoing battle.
This struggle was evident in “Au Pair”, an observational documentary screened at the event, which follows the lives of a small group of Filipina migrants in Denmark.
Released in 2011, the short film exposed the various problems faced by migrant women including job insecurity, legal issues, discrimination, and even loneliness away from family and friends.
Some of the Filipina migrants at the event have had similar experiences, including Zenaida Cabanatan, a 52-year-old housekeeper who was allegedly abused by controlling employers who tried to restrict her civil and employment rights.
“I wasn’t allowed to talk to anyone. I didn’t have a day off. I worked long hours even until 12 midnight. They didn’t pay me enough either. And when I want to send money to my family in the Philippines, they would refuse and insist that they do it themselves,” she revealed.
Cabanatan, a Quezon City native who has been working in the UK for 14 years, claimed that her remittances were often delayed, which sometimes affected the life of her dependent child in the Philippines.
Furthermore, her employers allegedly attempted to send her back to the Philippines permanently with a one-way plane ticket, but she quickly realized the plot and managed to return to the UK.
She is now in the process of lodging a formal complaint against her former employers with the help of Kanlungan and Citizens’ Advice Bureau.
Speaking to ABS-CBN Europe, she added: “I was shocked. I kept wondering why they would so something like this to me. And then I found out through some advisers that I didn’t have insurance, which my employers keep a secret from me.”
Cabanatan’s story is just one of a number of cases involving vulnerable Filipino migrants in the UK, many of whom happen to be women.
According to the Philippine Overseas Employment Agency (POEA), women made up the majority of Filipino migrants since 1993, peaking at 74% in 2004.
On average, 35,892 Filipino women emigrate each year, alongside 23,993 men, based on statistics from the Commission on Filipinos Overseas (CFO) between 1981-2011.
Most migrants work abroad in search of a better future for themselves and their families, but many will find that life away from home is not always easy.
“We really need to discuss the issues. We are affected by so many issues, from work to the legal framework. We have lots to consider and I’m hoping that this forum will be a wake-up call for us,” said Florence Cayboen, a 47-year-old domestic worker from Baguio.
She added: “The hardest part is to organize women here in the UK, it’s not easy. I hope this could be a real starting point for us to unite as Filipino women of all ages and profession.”
Inspired by IWD, the group agreed to work towards launching a UK chapter of the Philippine women’s party Gabriella later this year.
Actress and campaigner Monique Wilson, who has been collaborating with Gabriella since 1999, attended the forum to lend her support and expertise.
“Filipinas are leaders. We just have to be given an opportunity and a platform to really find our voices, and to really exercise that voice,” said Wilson, who was elected as Director of International Affairs for Gabriella in 2012.
“What Gabriella represents is fighting for not just women’s rights and women’s freedom, but also national democracy which affects women in the end. Gabriella has been growing rapidly, it’s got international and regional chapters, and I think it’s time we have one in the UK because we have so many amazing Filipina migrant women here, and we have to continue to fight for issues that affect us, not only here but also back home.”
For the female activists, the aims are simple: to find a platform for women’s issues; to improve women’s rights through equality, respect and support; and to secure a better future for the next generations of young women.
And with the seed in place, only time will tell if their efforts bear fruit for the cause.
March 14, 2013
March 5, 2013