[ 2018 ]

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Sep 28 2018

Filipino Canadian Social Work in Toronto: An Oral History [Toronto ON]

We invited pioneers of Filipino/a/x-Canadian social work in Canada, (Titas) Flordeliz Dandal & Martha Ocampo to share with us their lived-experiences around making-visible, advocating and mobilizing the Filipino community in Canada. This event took place at  Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social Work at the University of Toronto, and was streamed live using Facebook Live. We were welcomed by Dr. Tat Tsang and his research term. 

Jun 6 2018

Transitions Meeting for Filipino/a/x Service Providers and Community Leaders [Calgary AB]

Following the success of the First Filipinos in Alberta Leadership Conference, the Filipino/a/x Service Providers and Community Leaders group started to transition into new areas of interest. We met at Fernando Cala Cafe. Some members of the group wanted to intentionally devote time and attention to decolonization, and started to meet and read about Sikolohiyang Pilipino (SP) history. This call to action was inspired by an informal meeting with Dr. Beth Protacio and Professor Toni Decastro, and their generous sharing about the genealogy of Sikolohiyang Pilipino. Group members wanted to understand SP in relation to the Filipino/ax settlement experience.

Though the Filipino/a/x Service Providers and Community Leaders in Calgary would stop our formal meetings, members continued to work together informally, and helped to support local Calgary initiatives including but not limited to Sikolohiyang Pilipino Calgary, FRIENDS, Bahaghari, Youth Empowerment Program, PFCA events, the 2nd Filipinos in Alberta Leadership Summit, and the FilCan Social Workers and Community Service Workers Network.


Photos by Jillian Sudayan: Upcoming

Jun 2-3 2018

First Filipinos in Alberta Leadership Conference [Calgary AB]

Members of our Filipino/a/x Service Providers and Community Leaders group participated in the First Filipinos in Alberta Leadership Conference at Hotel Blackfoot. More information can be found in the following resources:




Photos by PFCA and Jillian Sudayan: Upcoming

May 30 2018

CASWE-ACFTS Panel [Regina, SK]

Title: Situating and amplifying the burgeoning social work and community based scholarship within the Filipino-Canadian diaspora [Regina, SK]


Abstract: This first Filipino-Canadian panel at CASWE examines the burgeoning social work and community-based scholarship within Filipino communities across Canada. The panel explores different issues related to service provision, access to education, mental health, immigration and migration, as well as their transnational and intergenerational impact on Filipino-Canadian families and communities. The panel also examines community-based initiatives (research, art-based, and network building) in response to the issues faced by Filipino-Canadians across Canada, and reflects on potential links to social work practice. The panel will includes the following seven presenters:


Monica Batac engages with building local, national, and cross-country collaborations for Filipino youth-led initiatives. Monica’s work focuses on capacity building and intertwined research-practice for youth-led social change, with Toronto as her central site for exploration and innovation.


Karla Villanueva Danan presents findings from the BABAE pilot program (a seven-week theatre mentorship program for young Filipina identified women and non-binary youth). Karla highlights how community based performance workshops can create space for critical, creative, and satirical commentary on the complex colonial and/or migrant ancestry of young Filipinas.


Lauren Migrino and Joe Espina (MSW) discuss the Strength in Unity (SIU) project; a mixed method research study that examines two anti-stigma interventions (acceptance and commitment therapy and contact-based empowerment education) among racialized and immigrant men. Lauren and Joe discuss findings from the Filipino community in Calgary, Alberta, and the ways in which perceptions and community attitudes on mental illness shifted as a result of the intervention.


Fritz Pino presents an ethnographic study on older Filipino gay men in Canada, and highlights the practices and performances of older Filipino gay men as they navigate the diasporic terrain to building community, friendships, and belonging in later life. Fritz analyzes how older Filipino gay men understand sexuality, gender, aging, and queerness when forging relationships with others.


Christa Sato examines the educational outcomes of second-generation Filipinos in Canada. Christa explores five core processes (preparing, transitioning, navigating, and completing) as second-generation Filipinos navigate through their own expectations and challenges of entering university spaces.


Jessica Ticar examines the emotional and embodied lives of Filipina/o/x (Filipinx) youth and the memories of their transnational migration trajectory, particularly through Canada’s Live-in/Caregiver Program (L/CP). Jessica analyzes how Filipinx youth engage in visual and oral history to negotiate multiple meanings of “home” and the ways in which their migration experiences have impacted their place-belonging in schools.


Ilyan Ferrer chairs the panel, and provides summative statements and future implications for each paper. Ilyan also comments on the importance and relevance of scholarship being created and developed by emerging social workers and community leaders who are themselves Filipinx-Canadian.

May 25 2018

Fil-Can SCW General Meeting [Toronto ON]

Building from our February 2018 brainstorming session, the meeting revolved mainly around strategizing our Network’s activities and figuring out our Mission, Vision, and Goals as a group. We also discussed emerging concerns regarding our organizational status, as well frequency and facilitation of meetings.This meeting took place at 1005 King St. West, downtown Toronto.

Apr 26 2018

Planning meeting for Alberta Filipinos Leadership Summit [Calgary AB]

The April 2018 Meeting was a special meeting to discuss the groups role in the upcoming Alberta Filipinos Leadership Summit, with 20+ invitees. Cesar Cala, a member of the PFCA, booked a room at the McDougal Centre to discuss the Leadership Summit, and the possibility of creating a social services caucus. By this time, several members had taken on roles within the Leadership Summit. For instance, Christa, Joe and Ilyan agreed to serve as part of the Research Committee.


The group decided to consolidate and focus its attention on the Leadership Summit, as this was an important opportunity to highlight the issues identified in previous meetings to a broader Filipino/a/x and Albertan audience. Questions posed by the newly formed caucus were: what are the strengths, assets and achievements of the Filipino community; what are challenges, issues and problems that we face as a community; what are actions and solutions we can do to face these issues; what can the government do to help us face these issues; how can we increase cooperation among Filipinos in Alberta; and what are the other organizations that need to be part of this discussion?


Photos by Jillian Sudayan: Upcoming

Mar 22 2018

Meeting #3 with Filipino/a/x Service Providers and Community Leaders [Calgary AB]

The third meeting of the Filipino/a/x Service Providers and Community Leaders group (20+ attendees) once again took place at the Calgary Catholic Immigration Society on March 22, 2018. Thank you Sherrisa Celis for booking the room once again. The meeting started with a conversation on how the group could use their expansive work to support and amplify events and campaigns in Calgary. Francia Bodoso started by discussing the proposed Filipinos in Alberta Leadership Summit hosted by Philippine Festival Council of Alberta. Francia encouraged the group to consider participating and offering our expertise to the organizing committee. Ilyan also shared advocacy initiatives about the Toronto Caregiver Program, and the for support via testimonials from our Calgary group.


Following the community sharing, the group returned to discussing social issues in the Filipino/a/x community in Calgary, and began mapping through small groups, the emergent issues of temporary foreign workers/caregiver programs; status; anti-oppressive and decolonizing practices; foreign credentials; lack of unity; health; integration/services; family; youth; finances related to each other.


The group then discussed assets/strengths of the community and the policy-level issues to be addressed through decision-makers (i.e., federal, provincial, municipal government). Kuya Migs Guina encouraged our group to explore the potential of Sikolohiyang Pilipino as part of our decolonizing process. This idea was welcomed.

Feb-Mar 2018

Multi-prong advocacy for IRCC consultations, live-in caregiver pilot program [Toronto, ON]

During Winter 2018, the Network engaged in various advocacy efforts to ensure Filipina caregivers and Filipino/a/x settlement practitioners had an opportunity to offer their perspectives during the IRCC consultations regarding potential shifts/next iteration of the live-in caregiver program (LCP). 


March 17, 2018 – IRCC community consultation at Scarborough office co-facilitated by Kelly Botengan, Dr. Jessica Ticar, Fritz Pino, and Veronica Javier. Current caregivers spoke first hand about their experiences navigating the current LCP program, with Dr. Ticar offering counselling support throughout and after their sharing.


March 15, 2018, IRCC North York office: practitioners consultations
The network supported practitioners’ involvement in sharing and advocacy.


Feb 11, 2018, Toronto Filipina/o Caregivers, Community Consultation at Kababayan Multicultural Centre.
This consultation was facilitated by Network organizers and staff at Kababayan Multicultural Centre.


The network and select members also offered written submissions and email correspondence to IRCC during this consultation time.

Feb 22 2018

Meeting #2 with Filipino/a/x Service Providers and Community Leaders [Calgary AB]

The second meeting of the Filipino/a/x Service Providers and Community Leaders group took place on February 22, 2018 at the Calgary Catholic Immigration Society. Thank you Sherrisa Celis for booking the room. With an expanded invitation list, 19 social workers, service providers and community leaders discussed the group’s vision and objectives. There was agreement that a Filipino/a/x social services group would follow a non-hierarchical, natural group formation process where we share common and concrete objectives at each meeting. At this second meeting, the group wrote down key and urgent issues on sticky notes, which were then placed onto a white board. The categories that emerged included: temporary foreign workers/caregiver programs; status; anti-oppressive and decolonizing practices; foreign credentials; lack of unity; health; integration/services; family; youth; finances. To end the meeting, the group shared their individual reflections, and collectively decided to unpack categories in future meetings.


Photos by Christa Sato and Jillian Sudayan: Upcoming

Feb 2 2018

FilCan SCSW 3rd Meeting [Toronto ON]

This meeting was a facilitated brainstorming session with MSW graduate and practitioner Lorraine Valmadrid on our Network’s purpose. This was a foundational activity that helped us refine our Network’s mandate. This event took place at Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social Work at the University of Toronto. Our proposed agenda was as follows:


1. Mingle + Food (30 Minutes)

2. Introductions, Announcements, Celebrations

3. Activity and Facilitated Discussion about Purpose – What drew you to be part of this group? What do you hope to get out of participating? What do you hope to contribute? What do you hope the group will accomplish?

4. Discussion about How We Want to Work Together – What are our expectations of each other? What level of participation can different folks commit to? What are our roles?

5. Planning for Next Meeting

Jan 18 2018

Introductory Filipino/a/x Service Providers and Community Leaders [Calgary AB]

Organized by Christa Sato, Joe Espina, and Ilyan Ferrer, the first Filipino/a/x Service Providers and Community Leaders meeting was held at the Alex Community Food Centre on January 18th, 2018 (6:30 PM MST to 8:30 PM MST). Thank you Joe for booking the space for us. We invited Filipino Service Providers and Filipino Community Leaders. The meeting was an opportunity for like-minded practitioners and organizers to meet and brainstorm about the emerging and urgent issues impacting the growing Filipino/a/x community in Calgary, Alberta. Attended by established and entry social workers and students in the fields of immigrant settlement, advocacy, media, and child protection,, the group agreed that a network was needed to consolidate the growing expertise and presence of Filipino/a/x social work providers. The group agreed to meet on a regular basis to continue conversations and to share best practices services.


Photos by Jillian Sudayan: Upcoming

Jan 2018

Practitioner support for learning bonds proposal [National]

Toronto-based members of this network offered  their skills in grant writing and program development towards a proposed national project on supporting saving for post-secondary education for Filipino Canadian families, with Kababayan Multicultural Centre as the anchor partner. We leveraged several community organizations in Ontario, Manitoba, and British Columbia as project partners.