2 12 2009

I was glad to participate in two fundraisers with our class this semester.  It always feels good to help great causes that help people you care about or friends and family of someone you are friends with.  The money raised from the event at Poleng will go to both VH1 Save the Music and Bayan-USA for relief efforts after Typhoon Ondoy.  The bake sale money is also going to Bayan-USA, so I thought it would be interesting to find out some more info about this organization.

Bayan-USA is an alliance of various Filipino organizations in the nation.  It is the only international extension of the organization “Bagong Alyansang Makabayan” (aka Bayan-Philippines).  They are focused on bringing awareness to Filipinos and their struggles in the US.  Also they want to help bring unity and equality (especially equality of rights) to Filipinos and their communities.

Their relief effort for Typhoon Ondoy is called “BALSA” (Bayanihan para sa Sambayanan, meaning “People’s Cooperation for the People”).  The money gathered by this effort will be used to purchase and distribute food, medicine, clothing and basic necessities to workers, peasants and the urban poor.  Everything is in dire need since the government had barely stocked any of these precautionary supplies before the typhoon hit.  More information on Bayan-USA and BALSA can be found on the organization’s website:

I found out that the organization has a NorCal chapter.  Within that there are a few more groups centered around NorCal Cities: Anakbayan in the East Bay, babae in San Francisco, League of Filipino Students at SF State, and San Francisco Committee for Human Rights in the Philippines.  The chapter actually has a blog on this same host!  (





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