October marks the celebration of Filipino American History Month. Barangay Chabot and Malaya Tri-City on Oct. 9 in room 554, celebrating Filipino American History Month.
With 4.4 million Filipino Americans in the United States, they are the second largest Asian American group. Congress recognized in 2009 that October would be celebrated as Filipino American History Month after many years of organization for recognition.
“So as a Filipino, it means a lot to me because it represents who I am and also the people,” said Chabot College student Stephanie Corelo. “You know, who are my friends, my family, and it also gives me a chance to celebrate our heritage or culture.”
Mayala Tri-City, a Filipino American social justice movement group in the East Bay, collaborated with Barangay Chabot, leading a lesson on the history of the Philippines and when Filipino Americans came to the United States.
From learning the Spanish had colonized the Philippines for nearly four centuries to understanding the different waves of Filipinos immigrating for a better life. Students learned something new that connected them to their cultural history and heritage.
The meeting ended with an activity of Chabot College students of Filipino descent writing down the date and reason why their family immigrated to the United States on a timeline. It is to show that many Filipino American students are similar with their families’ immigration story for a better life or job opportunities.
“For me, Filipino American History Month means getting everyone’s kind of look back at their family history. Getting to know and understand why we all came here and seeing just how similar or maybe even how different you are,” said Janice Martir, president of Barangay Chabot.
“For me, I think a lot of people when they talk about Filipino American History Month. The context is usually in the past. To me, what it means is being part of history and continuing the history of resistance of our people,” said Kristal Orasio, a member of Malaya Tri-City.