November 15 is National Philanthropy Day in Canada. It is a day to recognize the philanthropic achievements of volunteers, fundraisers, charities and organizations.
Working together for a common good through donating money or volunteering labour is a defining value of our country. Statistics back this up.
Almost half of all Canadians volunteer. In 2010, 47 percent of Canadians volunteered, an average of 156 hours per volunteer, giving 2.1 billion hours of their time annually for an equivalent 1.1 millions jobs performed through volunteering. (Statistics Canada Giving, Volunteering and Participating Survey, 2010)
The average annual donation in 2010 was $446 per donor.
People give their ‘time and treasure’ because they want to make a contribution to the community and feel compassion for those in need. (Huffington Post, November 15, 2012).
Filipinos in the Diaspora, including Canada, are just as generous.
They give back to the Philippines primarily through cash remittances to their families. The inflow of dollar remittances from abroad has buoyed the Philippine economy for years. “In 2006, remittances reached US$12.6 billion, roughly 10 percent of the GDP 2006...” (Diaspora Philanthropy: The Philippine Experience, Victoria P. Garchitorena, Harvard University, May 2007).
Filipinos in Diaspora also contribute their time and treasure to charitable causes in the Philippines, particularly in their hometowns. It is said that “the Filipino may leave the Philippines, but the Philippines never leaves the Filipino.”
While abroad, Filipinos form hometown associations, cultural groups, professional groups, alumni associations, sports clubs, church-based groups, and other associations. Primarily for social interaction, they often weave philanthropy into their activities.
We see this in Canada. A Canadian Filipino youth organization raises funds for a health clinic in Bulacan. An alumni association fundraises for scholarships in their hometown school. Several associations come together to hold a fundraising concert to help victims of a natural disaster in Leyte.
We see this in Canadian Filipino Net (CFN, www.canadianfilipino.net), a community website run by an all-volunteer crew of editorial board, technical crew, writers and contributors across Canada for the purpose of highlighting the issues, culture and profile of Filipinos in Canada.
Through the commitment of volunteers, you have read many articles in CFN sharing our traditions and cultures that help second generation Canadian Filipinos understand their roots, and Canadians of other cultures to understand Filipinos better. You have read stories about the achievements of Canadian Filipinos across Canada, something to be proud of. You have read commentaries critiquing Canadian policies that affect the quality of life of Filipino caregivers, and propose solutions. You have read expert advice in the column that assists skilled immigrants in accessing their professions. We know you read these stories because in the first year alone, CFN has received over a million reader hits.
On National Philanthropy Day, Canadian Filipino Net asks the community to show they value CFN by sharing their ‘treasure’ with Canadian Filipino Net to help defray the costs of the website and to help reach even more people.
In order to keep producing the stories you like, CFN has begun a community fundraising campaign which starts today. We have created a donate button where readers can easily donate. If you like the stories you read in this website, please give. Your donation will help us continue this website into the future.
Soon, we will also be launching a sponsorship campaign, more details to follow.
Show you care about quality stories of our community. Make a gift to our community on National Philanthropy Day by giving to Canadian Filipino Net (www.canadianfilipino.net). Your gift will make the voice of Canadian Filipinos resonate strong and deep from coast to coast. Marami pong salamat!
By the CFNet Editorial Board
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