Surviving the Siege: A Maranao’s Perspective on Marawi Evacuees

Peacebuilding in Time of Conflict From the Eyes of a Manila-based Moro Peace Worker We went to an evacuation center to conduct a psychosocial peacebuilding activity for the survivors of the Marawi Siege. We went straight to the gymnasium, where the evacuees are, upon arriving at the venue. What welcomed us is a typical scene…

Kung Paano Hinaharap ng Babae ang Hirap

Mga Kwento ng Pagtitiis at Pagpupunyagi ng Kababaihang Maralita Unang Bahagi Alas-tres ng umaga, gising na si Aling Irma.* Sa totoo lang, aniya, parang wala na siyang tulog. “Minsan, pag yung humihiga na ako, alas-diyes, ganun, tinatawag pa ako dun sa kabila. May iniuutos pa, ganun. Sa kagustuhan ko naman na ako ay may kita,…

“It Would Be Unfair to the Kids”

It was late afternoon on a summer day about seven years ago and I was fake-sleeping inside my mom’s hospital room because it was my turn to guard her. She was admitted because of a mild stroke and she was talking to her attending physician about what happened to her. “Will I still be able…

Of Weaning and Losing

*This is an ode to every mother left by their prodigal daughters.  They say I am the next in line, heiress to the throne, the princess to her Queendom. The pampered daughter. The spoiled kid. Ask and I shall receive. Ask, I did. I said, ‘Freedom, that’s what I need.’ She introduced me to people…

The Transgender Couple

Our pseudo-conservative society will judge them and the mysoginists will bash them. But for Pau and Aiju, both 25, they simply made a decision to choose, and that is to choose love––no matter how cliché it may sound. These lovers met only days after Valentine’s Day in 2015. The last two years was not smooth sailing…

The Rising Burma

Five years ago around this time, in one hot summer day in Singapore, I woke up to a good news from a dear friend that I’ll get a chance to tour Myanmar for free.  I was set to go back home in Manila after finishing a 10 month-contract in an F&B company, so I thought…

Ang Resureksyon ng ROTC

Pormal nang inaprubahan ni Pangulong Rodrigo Duterte ang sapilitang pagpasok ng lahat ng mag-aaral sa Grade 11 at 12 o Senior High School sa Reserve Officers Training Course (ROTC). Sa pagbubukas ng Palarong Pambansa sa Antique noong Abril 24, nagbanta pa ang Pangulo sa mga umaalma sa ROTC na posible pa siyang magpatupad ng sapilitang pagsisilbi sa…

Depression: The Window for Helping

Depression is an opportunity for those experiencing it and those witnessing it. To the one experiencing it, this can be a great journey into creating and transforming the bad into wonderful or the pale into colorful by tapping one’s inner warrior. For the witnesses, it is a brave chance to bring hope and show compassion even…

What Should Gender Equality Mean?

For the 2017 International Women’s Day (#IWD2017), I’d like to discuss something that has been bugging me for a while now. Several months back in London, I was doing pre-interviews with a businesswoman for a feature we were doing on her friend, a top female CEO. A female colleague chided me for inquiring about how…

Gabe Bondoc: The Homecoming of a YouTube Sensation

One. Two. Seven. Nine. It took a while before I (as well as hundreds of other fans) got to hear that intro live in Manila straight from the man himself—Gabe Bondoc. It was long overdue, but damn was it worth the wait. We Match Unlike many of his over 300,000 subscribers, I didn’t find Gabe…

EDSA 31st Anniversary: Iba ‘Yan — A Music Video

Sa isang pambihirang pagkakataon, ipinamalas ng Pilipino sa mundo ang lakas ng pagkakaisa. Ang isang diktador at ang kanyang rehimen ng karahasan, pinatalsik ng sama-samang pagkilos ng sambayanan. Ang demonstrasyon, naging mapayapa. Ang mga tangke, hinarangan ng nagkakapit-bisig na mamamayan. Ang mga baril, tinapatan ng mga bulaklak at rosaryo. Ngayon, tatlumpu’t isang taon na ang…

The Music Scene of UST: What Needs to Happen (and to Every Other Music Scene, Too)

Before becoming the national favorites, they were artists in their infant stage. Your local bar’s stage entertainment. Your performers at campus events. The competitors in your barangay battle of the bands. The undervalued, underappreciated and underpaid life-force of music. The local artists. As with everything, music needs a sustainable environment to survive. With little incentive…