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Christmas CD Launching Concert

posted Nov 17, 2014, 7:45 PM by Carlo Parapara   [ updated Nov 17, 2014, 7:47 PM ]

SAVE THE DATE: Sunday, June 15th (8:00pm) Kennedy Center Benefit Concert

posted Mar 25, 2014, 6:12 PM by Carlo Parapara   [ updated Apr 5, 2014, 10:26 PM ]

Award-winning Broadway artist Lea Salonga, Hollywood actor Lou Diamond Phillips, tenor Rodell Rosel, ballet dancer Christine Rocas, singer and a host of other celebrities will come together in the nation's capital for a benefit concert for victims of Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines.

4 April 2014

WASHINGTON, D.C.— Award-winning Broadway artist Lea Salonga, Hollywood actor Lou Diamond Phillips, tenor Rodell Rosel, ballet dancer Christine Rocas, singer and a host of other celebrities will come together in the nation's capital for a benefit concert for victims of Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines.

The Philippine Embassy said the concert, dubbed “After the Storm,” will be staged at the Kennedy Center of the Performing Arts here in Washington, D.C. on Sunday, 15 June 2014.

The concert is being held in cooperation with the US-Philippines Society and the Philippine Humanitarian Coalition and will be directed by Emmy-nominated producer, Robert Pullen.

“This benefit concert intends to bring attention to the invaluable and necessary efforts of recovery for the people of the Philippines who were affected by Haiyan,” said Ambassador Jose L. Cuisia, Jr., who conceived the project with his wife, Mrs. Maria Victoria Cuisia.

Ambassador Cuisia said the concert, which will take place at the Kennedy Center Concert Hall, will benefit storm victims through partner organizations committed to the rebuilding of the devastation that has occurred in the Philippines.

"As the world's attention is gradually drawn away from the devastation in the central Philippines, we are reminded that formidable challenges remain for millions of families displaced by the most powerful tropical storm ever to make landfall,” said Ambassador John F. Maisto, President of the US-Philippines Society.

“The Kennedy Center benefit evening will help those people reconstruct homes and schools, restart businesses, restore livelihoods, and regain access to health facilities,” Ambassador Maisto added.

The evening will include celebrity appearances and performances and feature a symphony orchestra and a 40-person choir. It will also include a series of video messages of hope from celebrities and other personalities from around the world.

Ambassador Cuisia said that among the first to confirm their participation in the concert was the Manila-based Lea Salonga, who won the Olivier, Tony, Drama Desk, Outer Critics and Theatre World awards for her appearance in Miss Saigon.

Salonga is the first Asian actress to play the roles of Éponine and Fantine in Les Miserables on Broadway.  She portrayed both roles on the musical's 10th and 25th anniversary show in London respectively. She also provided the singing voice of two official Disney Princesses: Jasmine in Aladdin (1992), and Fa Mulan in Mulan (1998) and Mulan II (2004).

Also participating in the concert is Filipino-American actor Lou Diamond Phillips who is best known for his breakout starring role in the movie La Bamba as Ritchie  Valens. He earned a supporting actor Golden Globe Award nomination for his role in Stand and Deliver and a Tony Award nomination for his role in The King and I. Other notable films in which Phillips has starred include Courage Under FireChe, and Love Takes Wing.

Grammy Award-winning artist, of the Black Eyed Peas will also perform in the concert. The Philippine-born artist, whose real names is Allan Pineda, is known for his philanthropic and humanitarian work through his Foundation.

Also performing is Chicago-based tenor, Rodell Rosel, who has been hailed as one of the best young opera singers of his generation. Rosel performs regularly with the Lyric Opera of Chicago and has appeared in several operatic performances around the US. He recently finished a stint at the Sta. Fe Opera in New Mexico and made his debut performance at the Metropolitan Opera in New York early this year.

Joining this star-studded cast is Christine Rocas, principal dancer courtesy of Joffrey Ballet. Prior to joining the Joffrey Ballet, Rocas participated and won several prestigious awards from different international ballet competitions.

Tickets, ranging from $25 to $250, will go on-sale starting April 4 and may be purchased online at or visiting the Kennedy Center box office or charge by phone by calling (202) 467-4600.

There will be sponsorship packages available for corporations and individuals who would like to underwrite the event. For information on sponsorship opportunities and other queries, please email or call +1.202.595.2880.  ###

2014 Meet & Greet and Post-Valentine Party

posted Feb 11, 2014, 10:53 AM by Carlo Parapara   [ updated Feb 16, 2014, 6:16 AM ]

this Love Month!


        Click here to RSVP
  (Please RSVP by Feb. 17, 2014.)

Filipino/International Teachers Meet & Greet

Judge Sylvania Woods ES

3000 Church St., Glenarden, MD 20706

February 21, 2014, 5:00 - 8:00 PM


Refreshments will be served.

Attachment: Flyer Invitation

Typhoon Haiyan Support Night

posted Dec 30, 2013, 9:09 AM by Carlo Parapara   [ updated Dec 30, 2013, 10:20 AM ]

As we remember the less fortunate and victims of Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda) during this Holiday season, Monumental Sports, the Washington Wizards and Miami Heat Basketball Teams have generously agreed to host:
“Typhoon Haiyan Support Night”
Washington Wizards vs. Miami Heat Basketball Game
Wednesday, January 15th, 2014 @ 7:00 pm
Verizon Center
601 F Street NW
Washington, DC  20004
Please see attached flyer for group sales or you can order online at:
Promo Code: “haiyan”
Since this game may sell out, please promptly order you tickets. The Philippine Embassy representatives will attend and may send a message during game time.

Also, before the game tip-off, the Philippine Humanitarian Coalition (PHC) is hosting a second event – “Professional Network and Benefit Concert" – featuring The Speaks and other local performers.
Venue:          Ping Pong Dim Sum
Address:       900 7th St NW, Washington, DC (one block north of the Verizon Center)
$25 per person or $20 per person (if paid before December 31, 2013)                       
3:30 pm – 5:30 pm            Dim Sum 
5:00 pm – 5:45 pm            Concert
5:45 pm – 6:30 pm            Pictures and Autographs
There will be a cash bar.
If you have any questions, please email me at And please feel free to share this information to your friends and respective groups.
Maraming Salamat Po. Maligayang Pasko at Manigong Bagong Taon sa Inyong Lahat.
PHC Events Committee
"To assist in the rebuilding of lives, building the future of Philippine communities affected by Typhoon Yolanda/Haiyan”

DOL and ED Response to PEN

posted Apr 6, 2012, 6:52 PM by Carlo Parapara   [ updated Apr 6, 2012, 7:08 PM ]

2011 PEN Annual Meeting & Resume Preparation Workshop

posted Dec 12, 2011, 3:25 PM by Carlo Parapara

Dear Members,

Please join us on Wednesday, December 14, 2011, 4:00pm at Kettering Middle School (65 Herrington Drive, Upper Marlboro, MD 20772) as we hold this year's Annual Meeting of the Pilipino Educators Network (PEN). Take this opportunity to network and reunite with old friends and fellow members. Benefit from the Resume Preparation Workshop that will immediately follow the meeting. Snacks will be served.

Please click here to register.

Also, please view our Board-introduced resolution to amend our Constitution & By-laws. An affirmative vote by two-thirds of the members present in the Annual Meeting is required to adopt the resolution.

We look forward to seeing you on Wednesday and urge you to invite other members to attend as well.

Thank you very much.

The PEN Leadership Team

Foreign Teachers' American Dreams Vanish in a Flash

posted Sep 29, 2011, 11:17 AM by Carlo Parapara   [ updated Sep 29, 2011, 11:27 AM ]

DISTRICT HEIGHTS, Md. — As teacher Maria Ursula Raymundo stared out at the desert landscape bouncing past, she found herself thinking about where she would have been if her life hadn’t been turned upside-down by a bureaucratic nightmare: On bus duty at the suburban Maryland elementary school where she had taught P.E. for four years.

Instead, she was traveling the desolate back roads of Arizona and New Mexico in a van with a group of fellow Filipino teachers, hoping to find a school that would give them jobs before their American dreams vanished once and for all.


Pres. Aquino Delivers Message to the Fil-Am Community in Washington, DC, Maryland, and Virginia

posted Sep 24, 2011, 4:49 PM by Carlo Parapara   [ updated Feb 6, 2012, 12:16 PM ]

   Photo courtesy of the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) 

September 21, 2011


His Excellency Benigno Simeon C. Aquino, III

President of the Republic of the Philippines

Malacanang Palace

Manila, Philippines


Dear President Aquino,


We are 957 Filipinos, whose lives and that of our spouses and young children, have been compromised here in Maryland, USA, by the debarment provision in the settlement agreement between the US Department of Labor (DOL) and our employer, Prince George’s County Public School (PGCPS), who was found to be a “willful violator” of the H-1B program. This agreement was publicly announced on July 7, 2011, and became operative on the same day when almost 200 of us received notices from our employer that we would be separated from service when our visas expire this school year. To many of us, this meant an abrupt end to our lawful presence in the United States, and concomitantly, to our livelihood. To all of us, the debarment is unjustly punishing us – the victims.


Our plight must have come to your attention when we first received notice of the DOL findings on April 5, 2011. As beleaguered Filipino citizens, we sought advice and legal counsel from the Migrant Heritage Commission (MHC) and the Philippine Embassy in Washington, D.C.  through its labor attaché. However, this initial furor died down on May 5, 2011, when PGCPS gave their word to us that they would continue processing the renewal/extensions of our visas; they actually collected the necessary documents from us. You could only imagine our disappointment and disgust when we were told that we would be losing our jobs on account of our status after PGCPS promised extensions on our visas.


We are writing to you, all 957, to urge you to protect our status, our livelihood, and our lives, in general.  In the past months, we have approached the Philippine Embassy for help, for people and organizations in its network that might be able to provide relief and remedies to our situation. We have also linked up with local civic groups and private individuals to help advance our cause through appeals to local officials, information drives, pickets, and rallies. We have listened to a number of lawyers.  Individually, we have done the best we could to be able to stay legally in the US. To many of us, going back home to the Philippines is not a choice: We have uprooted our lives and families in the Philippines and have settled here in the United States. Moreover, the speed and precipitousness of the determination did not leave us ample time to prepare to move. Right now, our lives hang in a balance as we try to find relief from the unfair effects of the debarment on the lives of our family members.


As citizens of the Philippines, as part of the overseas workforce that significantly contributes to our country’s economy, as paying members of the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) and Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA), we call on you for any appropriate diplomatic action to defer our present status until after the two-year debarment. We also respectfully urge you for legal assistance funding for the services of a US law firm that will bring the violators to justice and give us, the victims, relief from the effects of the debarment.


Your apt consideration of our urgent appeal will be highly appreciated.


Mabuhay po kayo!






c/o the Pilipino Educators Nework (PEN)

1107 Ivy Club Ln Unit 444

Hyattsville, MD 20785





Carlo B. Parapara

PEN President

Happy Hour for Teachers' Cause @ Local 16 on September 30th

posted Sep 19, 2011, 8:42 PM by Carlo Parapara   [ updated Sep 23, 2011, 12:57 PM ]


Suites By Sondheim - A Benefit Concert Starring Ms. Lea Salonga

posted Aug 29, 2011, 7:20 PM by Carlo Parapara   [ updated Aug 29, 2011, 7:27 PM ]

The Philippine Development Foundation (PhilDev) USA Invites You To

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