GLENDALE, CA — Filipinos are pumping up the music and exercising to help those affected by the ongoing crisis in Marawi.
It was all high energy, dance moves and good vibes for a cause. Zumba enthusiasts gathered for a day-long Zumba marathon to raise funds for families affected by the ongoing crisis in Marawi.
“Although we’re having fun, we’re also thinking about the devastation that’s been going on in the Philippines. We want to make sure that we do our part,” said Joy Quiza.
The Alexis Louis Quiza foundation is named after Joy and Roncel’s daughter, Lexi; a young philanthropist who died in a car accident at age 19.
In the past two years, the foundation has raised funds for Philippine and US poverty issues, as well as given disaster aid.
This afternoon of Zumba raised over $3700, which will be channeled through the La Salle Academy in Iligan City, which will bring aid and evacuation centers.
“We’ve seen all over the news the devastation of the Maute group, and again this is a way of helping out our Filipino community in Marawi, especially displaced families with their children,” said Roncel Quiza.
For some of the organizers and dancers, the issue hits close to home.
ALQ Foundation board member Josette Corro studied in Mindanao.
“I adopted the culture of the Marawnaws and they’re very colorful, very respectful people, and I’m so hurt because I’ve seen a lot of devastated families.”
This fundraiser comes as the one month anniversary of martial law has passed. Jessica Anito, whose family lives about two hours from Marawi, says that it has helped bring peace.
“Martial law is in my town right now, in Imelda Zamboanga Sibugay, and they’re telling me martial law is fine because they feel safe.”
Other dancers say that for as long as martial law has been keeping the streets safe, they’ll support the President’s move — as long as it’s not abused.
While the situation in Mindanao can be stressful and even hit close to home — for a few hours, these ladies got to sweat it out and dance off their worries. They are happy to do their part in supporting their kababayans.