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A Message of Thanks!

     We just LOVE this photo of the Bustamante family!  When you see a family as happy, loving and connected as they are, we can't help but feel... (Danny's t-shirt says it all) "WINNING 24 SEVEN"! In 2014, his family came to SIPA as a client for family counseling.  Danny is a stay-at-home-dad due to health conditions.  Although he enjoys the time he gets to spend guiding the kids on their homework everyday, he knew that they needed a more structured environment to improve their social and academic performance.  With a single-income household, it was difficult to make ends meet, let alone pay for three children's extra-curricular activities.  With the help of our Case Managers, Danny learned about different 
financial assistance programs he could apply for when the utilities were at risk of being cut off.  He also enrolled the kids in SIPA's free Afterschool Enrichment Program, where they receive homework assistance, arts and crafts, and a weekly Tagalog language and culture class.  In just a couple of months, he noticed an improvement in their grades and in their behavior. Now, he says, the kids are doing so well that his daughter, CJ (on left), even received academic recognition at school! "I'm really thankful that there is a program like SIPA! It is really hard to find a program that not only helps my kids, but also my self and my family!", says Mr. Bustamante.
     The Bustamante family is just one of the many families that we've been able to help because of the support that SIPA receives from our community.  With your financial support, we are able to provide all our services for FREE, including after school programsarts & technology classes for older children, youth leadership trainingmental health servicesparenting supportfinancial literacyentrepreneurship training and small business support, among others.  THANK YOU!
     As you celebrate in gratitude with loved ones this Thanksgiving, please also consider making a donation to SIPA and help us reach our goal for this year!  There are also other ways to give back, such as volunteering at our events or sharing your knowledge at one of our programs.  
     We are thankful for YOU!  We wish you and your family a warm and blessed Thanksgiving! Maraming Salamat and Mabuhay!
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Joan Maranan

                         JOAN MARANAN, IN HER OWN WORDS 
              "On December 15, 2012, the Cathedral of Our Lady Angels held the tenth Archdiocesan Simbang Gabi celebrated by the Archbishop of Los Angeles, Jose Gomez. The Simbang Gabi mass was a Tagalog-English mass that included a procession of parols, a choir of singers singing tagalong mass songs led by Christopher Avendano, and many more. Being a part of the choir that had participated in the Simbang Gabi mass was an amazing experience. Moreover, having such an experience was unbelievable, and I’m extremely grateful for not passing it up. Singing as one of the few soloists at the Cathedral is a truly unforgettable experience. However, what led me to sing in front of the Cathedral? It was all possible with the help of SIPA, Will Simbol, and Christopher Avendano.
                Now, what does this have to do with SIPA? SIPA is probably one of the sole reasons that I had the strength to do such a thing. When I first started going to SIPA 10 years ago, I had no idea that I would have the ability to sing in front of many people. My life at SIPA has led me to many encounters and many lessons, confidence being one of them. I started to gain more confidence with the help of Will Simbol in the Himig Kawayan at SIPA. Kuya Will, as I’d call him, taught me how to control my voice in so many ways, and gave me boosts of confidence as well. Kuya Will was the beginning of my growth in confidence of my voice as a singer. Kuya Will and SIPA were stepping stones that helped pave the way to my being today.
                Who gave me that final push to sing in front of hundreds of people at the Cathedral? There was one person and one person only: Christopher Avendano. Christopher Avendano, Kuya Chris, as I’d call him, has been our choir director and pianist at Precious Blood Church of the Children’s Choir and the Youth Bilingual Choir. Before Kuya Chris came, I was already a cantor at Precious Blood, however, I was shy and scared, and I wasn’t loud enough to hear even with a microphone because I was so scared of messing up. When he came, he’d teach our choir on techniques of how to breathe and its importance, how to reach higher notes, how to sit and stand properly when singing, and so much more. It was because of him that I had more confidence in myself, to sing proudly and to trust my ability. Kuya Chris gave me the solo and he most importantly is one of my mentors in life. Kuya Chris helped me grow into the singer I am today.
                Simbang Gabi at the Cathedral is not the last stop of my journey and growth in life as a singer. With the help of SIPA’s influence, Kuya Will, and Kuya Chris, I’ve learned so many things that will still help me to become a better singer. Simbang Gabi was one of the most unforgettable experiences in my life. Just having the feeling of sitting where I’ve looked up and stared at before, knowing that I’d never get there was really a dream come true. Simbang Gabi 2012 at the Cathedral of Our Lady Angels has truly changed my life."

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Professor Ninez Ponce Talks About Health and the Pilipino Community

October 4th, 2012, Associate Director and Professor Ninez Ponce addressed the Pilipino community about the importance of the Southern California Health Intervention Survey (CHIS) at Search to Involve Pilipino Americans (SIPA). 

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Thank you, Mahalo nunui and maraming salamat to all the wonderful folks who graced the Jacinto residence, Tagpuan, for Joel's event to support the important work of Search to Involve Pilipino Americans and Kayamanan ng Lahi.

Added thanks and appreciation to Friends of Joel Sponsors: Melissa Veluz, Joe Sayas, Todd Bennett & Cecile Santos, Cecile Ramos, Carlos Veluz, Mariko Kahn, Eugene &Teri Eng, Dan Niemann, Darren Manibog & Maria Paz Manibog, Carol Ojeda-Kimbrough, Jonathan Lorenzo, Mariel Jacinto-Valdes, Leonardo Pano Pandac, PhD., Wailani O'Herlihy, Robert Gaspar, Ed and Nila Cainglit, Bugsy Aguinaldo, Rachel Buenviaje, Rico and Kristine Calara, Alex de Ocampo, Judy Mitoma, Sharon Paulo and Tinette Sumiller.


(Click on pics to go to Facebook album!)
Posted in Pilipino-American | 1372 Comment(s) | Add Comment