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15/12/2016: CONSULATE IN SAN FRANCISCO CELEBRATES FILIPINO-STYLE CHRISTMAS WITH BAY AREA SENIORS

150 seniors and their family members attended the 10th Anniversary of the Pilipino Senior Resource Center and Seniors’ Christmas Party at the Kalayaan Hall of the Philippine Center on 08 December 2016.

In support of the Philippine Consulate General’s thrusts to Spark* Connect* Empower* the Community, bringing together the youth, millennials and the seniors in one event that fosters ties among Filipino-Americans, keeping alive Filipino traditions and customs, the Philippine Center hosted the 10th Anniversary of the the Pilipino Senior Resource Center (PSRC), an organization dedicated to serving the Pilipino seniors in San Francisco and the Bay Area through the Seniors Program, Breast Cancer Program, and Parental Hotline.

The Pilipino Senior Resource Center (PSRC) was founded in January 2006, starting out as a small community outreach program for Filipinos aged 60 years and older. It later expanded its outreach to include World War II veterans and their families.

In 2007, PSRC subcontracted with Asian Prenatal advocates (APA) to provide Pilipino Hotline Services. In 2008, the organization was granted funding by AVON/San Francisco General Hospital Foundation to provide comprehensive support service to breast cancer patients and survivors, under “Filipino Breast Cancer Support Services Program,” in a “Buong Puso” (whole-hearted) approach.  PSRC serves over 800 clients annually.

Consul General Henry S. Bensurto, Jr. welcomed the Seniors of the Filipino-American Community to the Philippine Center, and thanked them for “their sacrifices and hardships that paved the way for the Filipino-American Community to thrive” in San Francisco and the Bay Area.  He also thanked the volunteers, including the San Francisco Bay Area Ateneans and student volunteers from the University of San Francisco.

PSRC Board Chairman, Prof. Jay Gonzales and Executive Director Cecile Ascalon thanked Consul General Bensurto, his wife Mariza Bensurto, and the officers and staff of the Consulate, the sponsors and donors for making the event a memorable one for the seniors.

The event afforded 150 Filipino-American seniors and their families an opportunity to experience a traditional Filipino Christmas.  The seniors were treated to a program of singing, dancing, and parlor games.  Ateneo alumni and student volunteers from the University of San Francisco distributed Filipino food among the attendees.  To end the event, the Ateneans serenaded the seniors with Christmas carols.

Consul General Bensurto and Madame Mariza Bensurto, Deputy Consul General Jaime Ramon T. Ascalon and Mrs. Cecile Ascalon, with the San Francisco Bay Area Ateneans and student volunteers from the University of San Francisco

The seniors were thankful to PSRC, the Philippine Consulate and its partner organizations for making them feel appreciated, saying that they are looking forward to next year’s Christmas party.  END

Seniors were treated to a program with dancing, singing, parlor games and Christmas caroling.