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06/05/2014: PHILIPPINE CONSULATE ON WHEELS VISITS FRESNO, CONCORD

Top: Consular personnel processing passport and dual citizenship applications in Fresno, CA; Bottom left: Ms. Shiela de Jesus tending to a client’s query in Concord, CA; Bottom right: Volunteers man the Consulate-on-Wheels’ registration booth at the outreach in Concord, CA.

A six-person team from the Philippine Consulate General in San Francisco rolled into Fresno, CA late Friday night to begin a weekend consular outreach to two cities under the Consulate’s jurisdiction in California, which stretches from the counties of Monterey, Tulare, Inyo and Fresno in the south, all the way up to the county of Del Norte.

The two-day outreach, which saw the team shuttling from Fresno on Saturday, May 3, to Concord on Sunday, May 4, was the second of three scheduled outreaches to Fresno and the first of three to Concord. The Consulate-on-Wheels (COW) team, which was ably assisted by volunteer coordinator Ms. Maribelle Dyoco in Fresno, and a volunteer team deployed by Seafood City in Concord, processed the applications of over 150 clients during the outreach.

Top: Team leader, Consul Reichel Quiñones (L) and volunteer Coordinator Ms. Maribelle Dyoco reviewing an applicant’s passport application; Bottom: Consul Quiñones (in red) with (clockwise from top left) Mr. Ralph Suarez, Mr. Arvenn Abarrientos, and Ms. Ruby Domingo.

Salamat po sa pagpunta ninyo dito,” an elderly applicant told the team in Fresno as he submitted his dual citizenship application for processing. “Malayo po ang San Francisco para sa akin at mahirap dahil nag-iisa lang naman ako. Napaka-convenient po nitong serbisyo ninyo dahil matagal ko nang gusto maging dual citizen.

Acting Head of Post, Deputy Consul General Jaime Ramon Ascalon, lauded the volunteer teams from Fresno and Concord for their consistent support of the Consulate’s outreach program. “We are deeply appreciative of the support of our Filipino community, which has really enabled us to make our services more readily available to kababayans living in areas far from San Francisco,” he declared.

“In order to take full advantage of our services, we urge our kababayans to review our annual schedule of outreaches, which is available on our website, so that they can plan accordingly for their trips to our outreach locations. To the best of our ability, and subject to the availability of outreach venues, we have tried our best to schedule our outreaches during weekends, to minimize the amount of time off work someone may have to take to access our services.”

The Consulate-on-Wheels/Wings is a regular program of the Philippine Consulate General in San Francisco, in partnership with the local communities in the areas under its jurisdiction. Through its COW Program, the Consulate conducts regular annual outreaches to various locations in the ten states under its jurisdiction: Alaska, Northern California, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Northern Nevada, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming.

For more information on upcoming Consulate-on-Wheels outreaches, or to search for a COW coming to your area, visit http://www.philippinessanfrancisco.org/philippines-sf/consular-outreach-sf/ or follow the Consulate’s Facebook page on http://www.facebook.com/PCGSF.