The Words of the Shiokawa Family
Everyone must have been excited to know the outcome of the much awaited Migrant Workers’ Day and 110th Philippine Independence Day at Oji Asukayama Park, Tokyo last Sunday, June 15th, 2008. For those who were not able to make it and those in the provinces who could not travel to be with us, here’s a short report of the said event.
There were hundreds of people who flocked in the Oji Asukayama Park last Sunday partly because of the good weather and mostly because of the Filipinos’ desire to feel at home in the midst of Filipino fiesta atmosphere and be able to eat Pinoy foods and watched Pinoy entertainment for free.
The members of Peace and Order Committee headed by Robert Alcamfor were the earliest birds to arrive to monitor the coming and going of the cars to unload the booth exhibitors’ items.
The booth exhibitors started arriving as early as 7 AM to put up more booth decorations and set up the food and commercial items in display. The FJMGP booth staff arrived early as well. Headed by the Executive Officers Angie Obara, Lala Hasegawa, Lorie Shiokawa, Precy Akahori, Fe Obuchi, Liza Nakazaki, Wilma Kondo, Brian Dirige, Jun Granada and food staff Lalaine Nakano, Theresa Renes, Barbara Yokoyama, Flor Nishino, Marina Maeda, Nerissa Kawashima and with the help of Edward Mayo, the FJMGP booth was prepared and got ready for the selling of the brownies, macaroons, maja blanca, biko, mango cream and gulaman drinks. The survey forms, FJMGP flyers, membership forms and bookmarks were placed on the table as well.
The people started arriving at 9AM to attend the Ecumenical Mass. While the mass was ongoing, the members of different booths were busy preparing and cooking for different pinoy foods to be sold like barbecue, lugaw, kare-kare, adobo, puto, lechon manok, and more. Members in purple FJMGP T-shirts can be easily noticed moving among the crowds of people. By 10 AM, the booths started selling their items and the FJMGP booth was able to compete with the other food booths especially the Y50 per cup gulaman was a favorite and people kept coming back for more. Although we didn’t win the Best Booth Award, our booth was decorated beautifully and the staff were all neat and nice in their uniform purple t-shirts with bandana and apron. At the end of the day, the FJMGP booth made a gross sales of Y75,000 and a net profit of around Y45,000.
The Survey Staff composed of Lorie Shiokawa, Wilma Kondo, Jean Rose Kamimoto, Cherry Ann Nakamura, Lollie Yamada, Eutemia Ebato, and Francesca Motohashi all took turns in approaching and interviewing people in return of a bookmark which could give them a 50% discount for the gulaman drinks. They got 45 respondents, one Japanese donated monetarily, and some are people who are good connections to other Filipino Organizations, possible sponsors and people who are interested in promoting global peace as well.
The Medical Committee coordinated by Lala Hasegawa and Jocelyn Kitazawa with FICAP Secretary General Cora Kasuga and medical staff Isabel Hamada, Atsumi Baguio, Yumiko Castillo, Irma Sato, and Lotlot Matsumoto were busy for the registration and giving first aid and blood pressure check-up. Dr Hiroshi Shiraishi, the ophthalmologist of Isshin Hospital, assisted by Morita Saito, and Dr. Tadashi Miyazaki, an oriental medicine specialist, rendered free eye-check up and free acupuncture respectively to the patients who were lining up to avail their services.
Fe Obuchi, who was the official photographer that day, guided some of the blessed children in selling FJMGP bookmarks at Y10 per piece as fundraising. The children who came along with their parents had enjoyed the games organized by the United Filipinos for Peace and Advancement headed by Dante Negre and Commando Leader Reuben Cruz and the Abraenian group headed by Lila Estola. They also had fun playing in the playground in the upper side of the Oji Park.
People came and go but those in purple T-shirts stayed for the whole event and somehow made an impact to other Filipino organizations. There were around 100 FJMGP members including their families and children who came and enjoyed the festivity. Among the Mie-ken group who arrived early were West Japan Commando Leader Jessie Mariano, Ben Perono, William Enriquez, Charlie Gallo, Wilfred Alzaga, Alex Hermoso and Ramon Dedase. From Nagoya City was Jun Flores. The other members who were spotted were Jen-jen Yamaguchi, Jimmy Garbanzos, the Juliano brothers and many more to mention. It was like a reunion once again for those who haven’t seen each other for a long time. Reverend Wataru Funami, the National Messiah to the Philippines was also there and visited the FJMGP booth.
While the entertainment program was going on stage with the appearances of Philippine actors and actresses like Dennis Trillo, K. Brosas, Yasmin Kurdi, Allan K., Jed Madela, and the Sex Bomb Dancers, people were busy visiting booths, eating, chatting, laughing and having fun.
The World Tong Il Modo Federation with the participation of our very own President Angie Obara performed on stage a Martial Arts ballet to the undying tune of Eye of the Tiger, to the delight of the audience.
Picture takings were never ending and after the FJMGP booth had sold out the food items at around 4 PM, there was a group picture taking in front of our booth, everyone making a joyful sound of victory. Other people passing by had joined as well for the photo and shouted Hooray.
The Philippine Ambassador to Japan, His Excellency Domingo Siazon, Jr also graced the affair. The whole event was ended by the singing of the Finale Medley of the nationalistic songs led by the Filipino talents in Japan and the members of the Organizing Committees headed by Labor Attache Danilo Cruz, actor Dennis Trillo, K. Brosas and Jobelle Salvador on stage, all waving a small Filipino flag. The FJMGP Executive Officers in purple T-shirts stood boldly and strikingly among the organizing committee members who were in white Phil. Embassy T-shirts on stage.
The event was a huge success in the eyes of the organizers, mainly the Philippine Overseas Labor Office and the Filipino community in Japan, and a great victory for God and True Parents in the part of the FJMGP group.
We, the FJMGP Executive Officers, are deeply grateful to the brothers and sisters who came all the way from far places to give support to FJMGP. Our gratitude too to those who helped in the decoration of our booth and putting up of the banderitas in the Oji Park last June 14th. To TIMD members and AMMS staff who were our partners in Peace and Order and Medical Committees, and all the members of both committees, to the cooks and bakers who made the food items we sold possible and extra food given free to staff and members, to the designers of our T-shirts, banners, flyers, bookmarks and tarpaulin, to those in the Philippines who took charge in making the banners, T-shirts, and buying the food ingredients, and to the AMMS staff who brought all the heavy goods to Japan, your names may not be mentioned here, but God knows who you are. And to each one of you who were there in the event, by merely being there, you really made a difference. We were able to show to the public that FJMGP is a group of love, unity and service. THANK YOU ALL.