VANCOUVER, BC — This was the scene at the Vancouver Public Library’s recent Filipino Cultural series.
A Tagalog song about women empowerment, turon and pandesal for meryenda, and an introduction on one of the few female figures in Philippine history’s revolution against Spain.
“It was really empowering to see Gabriela Silang on powerpoint because we didn’t grow up learning about Filipino heroes at school. We just learned about white communities and their heroes. It’s one thing to talk about having an inclusive environment and community, but it’s another thing to experience it and coming here today really brought that to life,” said Nelly Agbulos.
12-year old Kaitlyn Carino Pablo researched and talked about Gabriela Silang, wife of Diego Silang, a known leader of the Ilocano revolt against Spanish forces.
Gabriela continued her husband’s fight when the latter got assassinated, and became known as one of the first female leaders in the fight for independence from Spain.
“It’s important for us to pass on our stories, it’s also for my daughter to know that she’s represented and that there are strong figures like her that she can look back on to history…that’s priceless,” said Jerilynne Luna.
The Vancouver Public Library’s Filipino cultural series’ next event will be on June 21st, in celebration of Philippine Heritage month.