Philippine Consul General Junever Malihum-West donated $3,000 to support ANCOP. She handed the check to ANCOP Canada President Ricky Cuenca in March 21, 2015 at the St. Ohrid Clement Macedonia Banquet hall in downtown Toronto.
The occasion was a farewell party tendered in honor of the consul general who will move on to a new diplomatic post as Philippine ambassador to Jordan in the Middle East.
Organized by the Philippine Canadian Charity Foundation, the event was attended by officials and members of various Philippine Canadian charity organizations and individuals involved in development work in Toronto.
Special guests were Consul General West and her husband John West. They were joined by Senator Tobias “Jun” Enverga and wife Rose, and other personalities working with the Canadian parliament.
ANCOP was represented by Ricky Cuenca and wife Irma, Dan Gutierrez – Coordinator for Toronto, Mot Saliba – Coordinator for the Child Sponsorship Program, and ANCOP volunteers. Members of media were also present
During the program, Ricky was asked to address the audience. He rallied the guests to donate and help reach out to the countless poor especially in the Philippines, through ANCOP’s Child Sponsorship and Shelter programs.
“Filipinos in Canada are so blessed, and I encourage everyone to help us send poor children to school and build homes for poor families,” Ricky said.
He showed two video presentations about the ANCOP programs in the Philippines underscoring the success stories of the Child Sponsorship program. Ricky shared that two ANCOP scholars who graduated March 2014 were among those who topped the Philippine Board Examinations for Certified Public Accountants.
The ANCOP Canada president reported that ANCOP’s Haiyan campaign in Canada generated $500,000 and this fund is being used to construct houses in Tacloban, Philippines for the victims of Haiyan typhoon which devastated the country in 2013. This is ANCOP’s joint venture with SM Care Foundation, the charity arm of SM, Inc. the largest retail conglomerate in the Philippines. The houses will be turned over to the beneficiaries in June 2015.
“God is testing the purity of our hearts and our sincerity in loving the less privileged in life,” Ricky said, exhorting the Filipino Canadians present to step forward, be the hands of Christ, and be the agents of change for the sorry plight of the poor. “Let us give the poor hope regardless of religious affiliations,” he added.
Senator Enverga, in his speech, informed the Filipino Canadian community that the Canadian government is also doing its best to help the poor people in the Philippines by encouraging Canadian businesses to invest in the Philippines to generate employment. “If this happens, many Filipinos would not aspire to come to Canada to seek for jobs anymore; they would choose to remain in the country if they had jobs to support their families,” the Senator expressed.
In her response, Consul General West thanked the Philippine Canadian Charity Foundation for organizing the event. She shared that she has always been a supporter of ANCOP, and that she is a proud sponsor of a young girl in the Philippines under the CSP program.
The Consul General expressed that she greatly appreciated the vibrancy and dynamism of the Filipinos in Toronto; their hard work, perseverance and ability to rise up in crisis, and their community spirit.
“I thank you for your friendship and for forging partnerships to support the poor people in the Philippines,” she added. She encouraged the attendees to visit the Philippines and see for themselves success stories in helping alleviate poverty in country. These are initiatives undertaken by non-government organizations including ANCOP.
Consul General West assured those present that the best is yet to come for the Filipino Canadians in Toronto. “I was inspired by your support in my three years of stint here,” she said. “I am happy to report to you that we have expanded the services of the Philippine Consulate Office in Toronto.”
She ended her speech by thanking everyone present for their support and inviting them to visit the Philippine embassy when they go to Jordan.