Highlights from Haiyan Candlelight Vigil in San Jose

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11/13 @ MLK, Library, San Jose, CA — Thank you for all of those who attended, donated, and showed support at this past Wednesday’s Typhoon Haiyan Candlelight Vigil. We had over 50+ people and over 10+ organizations and schools attend, along with coverage from several local news media sources. We raised over $300 during the hour candlelight vigil. Many community members also expressed interest in joining the Haiyan Task Force set-up by the National Alliance for Filipino Concerns (NAFCON). All proceeds will go to NAFCON. For more information and for a donation link, please see www.nafconusa.org

New media coverage: http://www.ktvu.com/videos/news/san-jose-group-gather-for-candle-light-vigil-and/vCJGJQ/
NAFCON donation statement: http://nafconusa.org/programs/
NAFCON statement on donating to grassroots organization: http://nafconusa.org/2013/11/why-you-should-donate-to-peoples-organizations-for-typhoon-haiyan-relief/
NAFCON donation link: http://tinyurl.com/bayanihanreliefeffort

For mroe information on how to get involved, please contact us absiliconvalley@gmail.com or msg us on facebook.

Upcoming NAFCON fundraisers in San Jose:

TapsilogHaiyan Relief Fundraiser
Friday, November 15, 2013
4:30 pm to 7:30 pm
Tapsilog Bistro, 819 W. Hamilton Ave., Campbell, CA 95008
*Light Appetizers hosted by the Jaurigue Law Group
Donations will be combined for the NAFCON Bayanihan Relief (NEED INSTRUCTIONS ON HOW TO DONATE)
JLG will donate an additional $10 for every donation received.

ab150_main_flyer_finalAB150: Andres Bonifacio 150th Birthday and ABSV’s 2nd Year Founding Anniversary
Saturday, November 16, 2013
6:30PM-9:30PM
Berryessa Branch of San Jose Public Library
3355 Noble Ave.
San Jose, CA
facebook: https://www.facebook.com/events/521270434627824/

Pass It Around: Fundraiser for the Philippines
Thursday, November, 21, 2013
Doors at 7:30pm. Show promptly at 8:30pm.
The Blackbird Tavern Annex
200 S. 1st St., San Jose, California 95112
$10 at the door All Ages
Showcasing words and songs from a variety of talent from all over the Bay Area:
Jason Bayani (Proletariat Bronze/The ReWrite)
Lorenz Dumuk (The ReWrite)
Kristen Sajonas (The ReWrite)
AstralogikAmy Dabalos
Hosted by: Dandiggity & Ruby Veridiano
Sounds by DJ Sig-O (Affinity Sounds)
facebook: https://www.facebook.com/events/1434807956747083/?previousaction=join&source=1

And here’s is our Anakbayan Silicon Valley statement on typhoon relief:

Tonight we’ve heard from a lot of speakers about how the typhoon has made an impact on their lives. This has no doubt been one of the most devastating disasters the Philippines has ever experienced, and so we thank you from the bottom of our hearts for coming out to commemorate the victims of this tragedy together as a community. This storm is not just a scientific phenomenon, or a story that makes the front page of the news. It’s a disaster that affects real people, some of them our families and friends, people just trying to build better lives for their loved ones.

With over 12,000 people estimated to have lost their lives, it’s more important than ever that we respond to the needs of our people. We’ve heard how NAFCON is sending 100% of the funds it raises directly to people on the ground, and we encourage everyone to contribute to this collective effort.

But we can’t stop with fundraising alone. While the typhoon was a natural disaster, the Philippine government has played a role in the environmental destruction of the country that made the effects of Typhoon Yolanda worse. Think back to the many indigenous peoples of the Philippines, or even to our families who are farming the fields. Unsustainable, large scale mining and illegal logging by foreign corporations have stripped the earth of trees, making landslides more common and flooding that much more destructive for them. Some of us may even have families living in the cities’ urban slums. These neighborhoods have been completely destroyed because systemic government neglect has led them to leave in weak infrastructures and in extreme poverty.

Think back to the Pork Barrel scandal. Where could these millions of public funds have gone if they weren’t pocketed by politicians? If only these funds went towards ongoing relief, rehabilitation, and building better measures for disaster preparedness, the typhoon may have not been as devastating. Our families may not have had to suffer as much as they did. Help for our people goes beyond fundraising–we must be fighting against these systemic problems that turn disasters into calamities.

Anakbayan Silicon Valley realizes that we as Filipino-American youth have the power to do both of these: spearhead efforts to fundraise for organizations that work directly with the people on the one hand, and stand against the injustice our families face on the other by fighting for National Democracy.  Together, we can stand against environmental destruction, neglect of the people, and the pocketing of public funds for personal gain. Together, we must take action and support our countrymen and women that are in need of help because, as the international media is slowly starting to show, the Philippine government won’t provide the aid they need.

Tonight we gather here for the International Day of Solidarity and Action for victims of Typhoon Yolanda. Many of them were our dear friends and loved ones, making this tragedy so much more personal. One of the best ways we can show solidarity and take action is to donate money to credible and honest organizations like NAFCON that work directly with the people. But history has shown that we need to keep taking action even after funds are given. Let’s continue to link arms, and fight for a Philippines that will never have to see such destruction and injustice again.

-Adrian Bonifacio, Chair of ABSV | Chris Lapena, Vice-Chair of ABSV

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