COVID 19 Crisis: OSCA Cares beneficiaries in Parañaque to receive gift certificates soon

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced directly from Dante Pacheco, the officer-in-charge of the Office of Senior Citizen Affairs of Parañaque (OSCA-Parañaque). Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

With the ongoing COVID-19 crisis and the recent move by the national government to extend the Enhanced Community Quarantine all over Luzon until April 30, people have no choice but to keep staying at home and continue to limiting their moves outside to the essential matters like banking and groceries.

Parañaque, a city with over one hundred fifty confirmed cases of COVID-19 (as of April 5, 2020), has something coming for its senior citizens who are legitimate members of the OSCA Cares program under the Office of Senior Citizen Affairs of Parañaque (OSCA-Parañaque).

Today OSCA-Parañaque officer-in-charge Dante Pacheco confirmed to me that an estimated fifty-seven thousand (57,000) members of OSCA Cares in the city will soon be receiving from the City Government gift certificates of SM Hypermarket.

Each SM Hypermarket gift certificate is worth P1,000. Do the math, the value for the declared number of OSCA Cares beneficiaries is worth at least P57,000,000. Based on the current foreign exchange rate with the United States Dollar, that is worth over $1,000,000.

Pacheco further said that each gift certificate will be delivered to the homes of the beneficiaries via Air21. He also stated that this move is the brainchild of mayor Edwin Olivarez.

If you are a senior citizen in Parañaque (or if you live with a senior citizen in the same city) and you have something to say about this breaking development, please reply to me via the comments below.


For more South Metro Manila community news and developments, come back here soon. Also say NO to fake news, NO to irresponsible journalism, NO to misinformation, NO to plagiarists and NO to sinister propaganda when it comes to news and developments.

 

My Observations: COVID-19’s impact on crowded fun-oriented events should be taken seriously

For the past few weeks, the coronavirus disease COVID-19 halted much of the world’s societies and economies compelling families to stay at home as the authorities struggle to prevent infections from spreading.

Community quarantine and regional lockdown have been implemented which strongly limited people from traveling around and also negatively affected truck deliveries which really hurt manufacturing and other key economic sectors like food production (and the businesses that sell food), retailing and more.

Unsurprisingly, special events that attract a lot of people as attendees have been postponed or cancelled. In the city of Parañaque here in the Philippines, the planned 2020 cityhood anniversary celebration had to be scaled down dramatically because of COVID-19-related fear. The said celebration’s most popular events such as the Bb. Parañaque beauty pageant and the Sunduan Festival could not be organized and as of this writing, no new dates for organizing such events have been announced. Under the current quarantine procedures, mass gatherings have been prohibited.

That being said, it would be best to forget about crowded fun events for the short term and just focus on being safe at home, managing your precious funds and maintaining faith in the Lord (note: study the Holy Bible and pray in tongues to Him).

Speaking of fun events, Comic Book Resources (CBR.com) published a new article that caught my attention titled Coronavirus Could Be the Beginning of the End for Super Conventions. It caught my attention because I myself had attended several pop culture events, including the gigantic Comic-Con International in San Diego, California (AKA San Diego Comic-Con).

Let’s focus on this excerpt from Comic Book Resources:

Comic conventions long have been an integral part of fan communities. Before comic-book movies and TV shows were a multibillion-dollar enterprise, fans looked forward to these annual gatherings as a chance to be surrounded by people who shared their interests. They (were) a sacred place where fans could collectively celebrate something they were really passionate about.

And they were fun. Really fun. Fans from across the country would make the pilgrimage to get up close and personal with the writers and artists they idolized. It was a dream come true for members of what was then a tight-knit community.

Over the years, that’s all changed. The conventions that were so beloved by a small group of people have ballooned into massive undertakings, drawing thousands of people from all over the world. They’re not so much fan-driven conventions anymore as much as they are trade shows for the entertainment industry.

That’s not to say these super conventions aren’t fun in their own right; they absolutely are. They offer fans a chance to witness major announcements, take part in Q&A’s with their favorite stars and celebrate pop culture on an unprecedented level. They’ve become an annual staple for the promotion of the latest film and television franchise projects, and big names continuously turn up.

Now, however, with the justifiable closure of these conventions due to the COVID-19 outbreak, it’s unclear how much we really need these super conventions.

To put things in perspective, any convention that is focused on fun would not be possible without the strong interest of multiple fans or enthusiasts who are not only willing to make time to attend such an event but also bring a good amount of money with them and spend on their respective interests.

The San Diego Comic-Con in California, the New York Comic Con in New York, and the AsiaPop Comicon here in the Philippines all require paying a fee (for the ticket or badge) in order to enter the venue which has most entertainment events and booths that fans can go to.

When it comes to special activities, private screenings of trailers of upcoming blockbuster movies occasionally get organized as well as Q&A panel sessions with entertainers or industry professionals, press conferences and more.

However, we are now living in the age of social media, wide access to the Internet and smartphones which enable users to take pictures or videos in high-definition and upload them for people to see online. Think about it carefully.

What good is a closed-door press conference with celebrities when a fan in attendance can capture everything on video and beat the bloggers and members of the press by releasing content on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram?

What good is a private screening (which restricts attendees from taking footage) of a trailer or a short scene from a highly anticipated blockbuster movie when such content will only be released by the movie studio on YouTube, Facebook and other sites where Internet users can watch for free at the comfort of their homes?

What good is a fan convention if attendees post pictures/videos of embarrassing moments (example: someone throws a pie on the face of a movie star in front of the fans) online within minutes and become viral?

What good is buying classic comic books at the comic convention when the comic publishers themselves failed to wipe out the widespread online piracy (note: entire issues of comic books in digital form) of their comics which people can find and read for free?

One key point here is that fan conventions and other fun-oriented events that attract a lot of people are slowly losing their relevance. Convention organizers will have to come up with ways not only to stay relevant, not only to ensure exclusive stuff in their event is truly exclusive, but also innovate and raise the convention’s overall quality.

Going back to COVID-19, it is clear that the said virus is highly infectious and this alone defeats the purpose of organizing a huge event for as long as the risk of infection remains. As of this writing, local authorities are struggling to clean and disinfect places. Killing the virus is a costly and time-consuming affair.

Recently, the 2020 edition of the annual Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) had to be canceled due to COVID-19 which was a huge blow to many video game and technology companies that had signed up for the event. Microsoft, which was supposed to showcase their upcoming Xbox Series X console at E3, promptly announced it will organize a digital event instead.

Think about those words: digital events. Digital events can be done by companies to make a special presentation of their products or services in the form of a lengthy and detailed pre-recorded video or by organizing privately their showcase event (held in a venue that the company has all to itself) live via livestreaming. With the access of the Internet and the massive reach that social media provides, digital events can make fan conventions even more unnecessary. Digital events are also very useful for companies because they not only have complete privacy but also a lot more control in terms of creativity as well as amount of information to be released. This also spares companies from the hassles of crowd control as well as rampant questioning from members of the news media.

Together, COVID-19, wide Internet access and social media are factors that make organizing crowded fun-oriented showcase events more challenging than ever before. Why bother attending a local beauty pageant live in Parañaque City when viral infection, live-streaming and even crime incidents could happen?

Even after the end of this COVID-19 crisis, the community quarantine and regional lockdown, I foresee that it will take a lot more time before life really goes back to normal.

By then, I don’t think enthusiasm for crowded fun-oriented events would be restored to high levels immediately. Sports events, in my opinion, have a better chance of resuming given the nature of sports competition which remains very important with Filipinos. Other events like food fairs and shopping bazaars are more important to people in the local communities than beauty pageants or fan conventions. What people clearly want once this current crisis is over is worshiping the Lord together at church on Sundays.

Attending church is more essential than a crowded beauty pageant or a fan convention. There is no doubt about that!


Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com

Barangay BF Homes Sangguniang Kabataan (BFSK) Takes Part in Communities Assistance Campaign Related to COVID-19

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced by means of interviewing a top official of the Barangay BF Homes Sangguniang Kabataan. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

Barangay BF Homes Sangguniang Kabataan (BFSK) Takes Part in Communities Assistance Campaign Related to COVID-19

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Informative flyers and hygiene kits were distributed by the Barangay BF Homes Youth Council to the residents in the mission areas. (photo contributed by Barangay BF Homes Sangguniang Kabataan Chairwoman Mariel Tumang)

With the imposed enhanced community quarantine in effect, most businesses and all other activities of life have been halted. This shows just how tremendous microbes can have on people and society in general when it becomes widespread. Of course, I’m talking about Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) which has infected a few hundred people here in the Philippines.

With the enhanced community quarantine going on, officials of the barangays have been ordered to do their part on managing their respective local communities. To put things in perspective, there is the standard barangay unit led by its chairman (or captain) and council members (kagawads) who were elected into office by their constituents.

And then there is the youth council under the barangay referred to locally as the sangguniang kabataan (SK) which is led by elected officials the youth chairman and youth council members (SK kagawads).

For the topic of this post, I’m focusing on the Barangay BF Homes Sangguniang Kabataan (BFSK) which, as of this writing, is already doing really serious work on managing the Barangay BF Homes local communities in relation to the COVID-19 crisis that has affected everyone.

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Barangay BF Homes SK kagawad Jerry Dalmero distributes a hygiene kit composed of soap and alcohol. (photo contributed by Barangay BF Homes Sangguniang Kabataan Chairwoman Mariel Tumang)
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Barangay BF Homes SK kagawad Roselyn Regis gives to a resident. (photo contributed by Barangay BF Homes Sangguniang Kabataan Chairwoman Mariel Tumang)

To put things in perspective, Barangay BF Homes is one very large local community in terms of both land area and population. As the late Parañaque Congressman Roilo Golez (1947-2018) told me years ago, Barangay BF Homes is a very vote-rich community in the city.

The Barangay BF  Homes main unit led by Captain Paolo Marquez has been working hard implementing several rules (meant to reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19 infection) such as night-time curfew (8PM to 5AM), social distancing (persons are supposed to be a short distance apart from each other), ban on mass gatherings, educating the residents about coronavirus and more.

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Barangay BF Homes SK kagawad gently hands over a hygiene kit to a lady. (photo contributed by Barangay BF Homes Sangguniang Kabataan kagawad Alma Galindo)

For their part, the Barangay BF Homes Sangguniang Kabataan (BFSK) headed by chairwoman Mariel Angela Tumang and the SK kagawads have been working hard by visiting the many houses in the developing communities doing information campaigns about COVID-19 (with flyers being given to them personally) as well as distributing hygiene kits. Today, the BF Youth Council performed their duty by visiting eight mission areas and will continue to do so tomorrow in six mission areas.

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BFSK Kagawad Anne Corre hands over a hygiene kit. (photo contributed by Barangay BF Homes Sangguniang Kabataan kagawad Kelly Haboc)
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Even in a tight place like this, BFSK Kagawad Kelly Haboc persevered to hand out a hygiene kit. (photo contributed by Barangay BF Homes Sangguniang Kabataan kagawad Kelly Haboc)
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BFSK kagawad Stephanie Sebullen gives a hygiene kit to someone at a store. (photo contributed by Barangay BF Homes Sangguniang Kabataan Chairwoman Mariel Tumang)

Chairwoman Tumang confirmed to me that she and her team prepared five thousand (5,000) hygiene kits to be distributed to the residents at their respective homes. According to her, each kit comes with soap and alcohol which are essential for people to protect themselves with from the raging coronavirus. Along the way, they did their best to educate their constituents with discipline in mind.

“Maliit na tulong po na nanggaling sa amin pero alam po namin na hindi po ito yung lunas para makaiwas sa sakit ang talagang makakapaglunas po rito ay yung disciplina po ng tao. Sana po matututo nalang silang maging madisiplina, sumunod sa mga sinasabi ng gobyerno, manatili sa kanilang bahay at ingatan ang kanilang sarili,” BFSK chairwoman Tumang stated.

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Barangay BF Homes SK chairwoman Mariel Tumang wearing a mask and protective clothes. (photo approved by Barangay BF Homes Sangguniang Kabataan Chairwoman Mariel Tumang for this website)

As Tumang made clear, the BFSK and Barangay BF Homes itself have been working hard on preventing COVID-19 from spreading in their local communities as well as doing their best to educate the constituents. All of these are being done in accordance to the rules and orders of the national authorities.

Watch out for further BF Homes and South Metro Manila updates here soon.


Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com

For more South Metro Manila community news and developments, come back here soon. Also say NO to fake news, NO to irresponsible journalism, NO to misinformation, NO to plagiarists and NO to sinister propaganda when it comes to news and developments.

 

My Observations: Crime Incidents in Parañaque Involving Chinese Nationals to Continue Even More?

A few weeks ago, I called Parañaque City a hot spot for criminal incidents involving foreigners from China. As far as South Metro Manila is concerned, Parañaque registered 140 crime incidents involving Chinese nationals versus 54 in Las Piñas City and 19 in Muntinlupa City as per the findings of Southern Police District (SPD).

Think about it. There were 213 crime incidents involving Chinese nationals in South Metro Manila and Parañaque (the city of BF Homes subdivision, Manila Memorial Park and those lavish casinos and hotels by the bay) got almost two-thirds of that.

The trend of such crime continues to happen in the said city as confirmed by the January 20, 2020 news report by the Philippine Daily Inquirer. The report was about a police raid on a sex den inside a budget hotel that resulted the apprehension of a Chinese national who allegedly managed the place and the rescue of several Chinese women who allegedly were forced into prostitution.

Below are notable excerpts from the report.

Excerpt 1: The alleged manager of the sex den, Cai Ye Gui, also from China, was arrested. He now faces charges for violation of the Expanded Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act of 2012.

Excerpt 2: A tip from one of the victims’ clients led to the rescue of 11 Chinese women allegedly forced into prostitution inside one of the branches of a budget hotel chain in Parañaque City on Sunday.

Excerpt 3: The victims claimed they were promised jobs in the country, but ended up being forced into prostitution.

Excerpt 4: Similar to other sex dens raided by authorities, the business catered exclusively to Chinese nationals, especially to men working in Philippine offshore gaming operator (Pogo) companies and their service providers. Bookings could be made through the WeChat app or in person.

So the prostitution joint was handled by a male Chinese national to cater to foreigners from China and their workers were ladies also from China who were promised jobs in the Philippines only to end up working as prostitutes against their will.

As for the app called WeChat, that is the most popular messaging app in China (according to CNBC) owned by Tencent (full corporate name Tencent Holdings Limited) which is a Chinese multinational conglomerate.

Based on the details of the Inquirer report, it seems that WeChat is used for communication and business for the raided sex den. This brings me to an excerpt from CNBC’s article…

Excerpt 1: One of the primary uses of WeChat is messaging. Just like WhatsApp, you have a list of conversations that you’re engaged in.

You can add people in a variety of ways.

When people exchange contact details in China, you often see one person scanning the other person’s phone. Each WeChat user has a unique barcode known as a QR code. One person can scan the other user’s QR code to add them to WeChat. You can also use a phone number or ID to add a person and search for people nearby.

WeChat is one of the main ways people communicate in China. Even when doing business, people prefer WeChat to email. It’s even more prevalent because services like Facebook are blocked here.

And here is a look at the commercial side of WeChat.

Excerpt 2: If you’re buying something online in China, there will be an option to purchase with WeChat Pay. You will need to put in a passcode or use a biometric authentication tool to authorize the transaction.

Instant money transfers to your WeChat contacts can also be made via the messaging function, which makes it easy to split bills or just move money around China. It is possible to be nearly cashless in China and actually go out for the day without a wallet.

If WeChat was actually used for payments (in addition to booking) for services at the sex den by Chinese users who are physically present here in the Philippine, how were they able to make it work locally? WeChat’s financial transaction feature was supposed to work only in China.

To say the least, the app made bookings convenient for Chinese nationals before visiting the illegal joint in Parañaque City. The name of the budget hotel (which had the sex den inside) was not revealed in the Inquirer report but it was described to be located near the corner of Quirino Avenue and NAIA Road.

As for the legal aspect of the latest Parañaque sex den raid involving Chinese nationals, the law enforcers and lawyers will have to figure out how to effectively apply the Expanded Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act of 2012 on the suspects and other violators.

If found guilty, the suspects will be penalized for twenty years imprisonment and a fine of P1 million to 2P million for the act of trafficking, 15 years imprisonment and a fine of P500,000 to P1 million for attempted trafficking, and life imprisonment and a fine of P2 million to P5 million for qualified trafficking.

This latest crime makes Parañaque look bad and it is a fact that there are lots of Chinese nationals living and working in the said city.

Also let me add here the December 23, 2019 the city sisterhood agreement between Parañaque and the Chinese city of Anshan. On face value, the agreement looks like a pretty and promising way of the two cities becoming closer together. According to a Manila Standard report, the memorandum of understanding (MOU) between Parañaque and Anshan should “create opportunities for mutual growth, since both cities share similar environmental protection and tourism endeavors.”

There were other objectives that include “providing for better cooperation in conducting reciprocally planned and sanctioned programs geared towards the improvement of government administration, tourism, cultural preservation, environmental protection, education, technology, arts, and the holding of various endeavors mutually beneficial to both parties.”

What needs examining here is how many tourists from Anshan (a city of more than 3 million people) will come to Parañaque for tourism, how many of those same tourists will be setting up businesses locally, how many of them will take residence in the city, and are they all willing to follow the local and nationals laws at all.

What guarantee is there that Anshan tourists will not commit any crimes in Parañaque or anywhere else in the Philippines?

If there is anything that will prevent a city or a nation from prospering and becoming more competitive with others, it is crime. Other factors that will do the same include corruption, sinister propaganda, misuse of taxpayers’ money, sub-par public service and lack of financial discipline.

It is a sad truth that Parañaque is not too competitive with other Philippine cities and was not heralded for local governance. Now the city has a crime wave involving foreigners from China.

For those of you reading this who have genuine love for the country, start praying to the Lord that the crime wave will not harm Filipino families living inside the villages. Start reading the Holy Bible and apply its lessons on your life by heart.

Spotlight on BF HomeSarap, The Village Home-Cooked Food Directory

Spotlight on BF HomeSarap, The Village Home-Cooked Food Directory

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Do you love home-cooked food? Do you love BF Homes, the very large residential-commercial community that occupies portions of Muntinlupa, Parañaque and Las Piñas? Do you love grouping together on Facebook forming a very lively online community?

If you love all three, then you cannot go wrong with the BF HomeSarap Facebook group!

BF HomeSarap is not just any food-oriented, regional group on the social network. It is one of the fastest growing FB groups that highlights home cooking, good tastes, small enterprise and the BF Homes community members (plus friends).

BF HomeSarap’s growth in terms of membership is truly amazing. The FB group only started on April 2019 and from zero members it attracted to more than eight thousand (8,000+) members as of this writing! By comparison, there are other BF Homes-related (plus Barangay BF Homes-related) FB groups that lasted for years and still their respective memberships were exceeded by BF HomeSarap.

The FB group has described itself to be the resource for delicious home-cooked food (and drinks) right inside the village. As big businesses are prohibited, BF HomeSarap allows foodie sellers to post their specialties by showing pictures of the products, the name of the food or drink, prices and how they are being sold. What is notable about the group is that the people who make food at home are granted valuable opportunities to reach out to other members who might be interested to buy from them. In a business sense, the small food enterprises are able to make themselves known and gain chances to grow not only with selling products but also attracting new customers and establishing new business relationships.

And then something significant happened on December 7 and 8, 2019 – selected BF HomeSarap members came out in full force as sellers in the first-ever BF HomeSarap Community Food Fair and Bazaar which was held at the open-air basketball court and at the nearby covered stretch  inside BF NorthWest, Parañaque City. That community event, which was organized by village governor-at-large Lorea Miren in cooperation with the BF NorthWest Homeowners Association and supported by PARA APP, was a big success as it attracted between 250 to 300 visitors (including Parañaque City Councilors Jackie Bustamante-Mendoza and Wahoo Sotto) and almost all the vendors sold out! Apart from that, a strong spirit of community interaction, business and socializing took place.

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A look at just one section where the first-ever BF HomeSarap Community Food Fair was held inside BF NorthWest. This one was taken at a covered facility near the open-air basketball court (where the other vendors were present and selling too).

With all of these mentioned, you must be wondering: Who started BF HomeSarap in the first place? Why was it established? How did it happen? Where will BF HomeSarap head to now that its presence online and within the real environment inside BF Homes has been felt?

For all of you, my readers and food enthusiasts, I am happy to present to you my interview with BF HomeSarap founder and food stylist Ditas Antenor.

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To begin with, Ditas Antenor worked in the corporate world as an advertising executive and worked with her employer’s big-time clients. After more than a decade managing multinational accounts in various multinational ad agencies, she moved on to the production side and there she became a food stylist. She even spent time in the United States to learn about food styling (for print and broadcast).

“I decided back then to take up food styling because I made plans regarding my career ahead of time,” Antenor recalled. “I really planned ahead. I could quit my nine-to-five job and engage in freelancing. So what would be a good, lucrative freelance job that I know I could be good at? That was food styling which is rare (in the Philippines.)”

Back then, food stylists in the Philippines were rare. Antenor became the fifth among the already established food stylists at the time. She eventually got hired by some clients and established herself nicely. Raised as an Alabang Girl, she and her children currently live in the Las Pinas City part of BF Homes subdivision.

BF HomeSarap’s origin and tremendous growth within Facebook

So how did BF HomeSarap started as a group within Facebook? It all started with a trigger on the part of its founder Ditas Antenor.

“There was a trigger. It was related to me and my kids moving into BF Homes subdivision coming from Alabang. Our house here in BF has been around for a very long time,” Antenor said. “My kids grew up with my cooking. Although they enjoy commercial foods like pizza or burgers that can be ordered, they can only eat those sometimes and ultimately they still love home-cooked food.”

Being the highly focused planner she has always been, Antenor had prepared menus for their family up to a few months ahead. She does the home cooking and, from time to time, her children cook adding variety. The love for home cooking, good food and relationships all connected with the beginning of BF HomeSarap.

“Then one day, I said to myself ‘maybe I should form a group’. I’m not an original member of the BF Homes community but still this is our home, even if I still maintain and occasionally stay in our Alabang house” Antenor recalled. “After doing an initial search for food-related FB groups that were related to BF Homes, I formed an FB group for BF by BF focused on home-cooked food.”

Along the way, the founder recalled her efforts on forming a name for the FB group that is unique and would strongly resonate with food enthusiasts and BF Homes residents and stakeholders. The result, clearly, was BF HomeSarap which was a clever combination of the name of the subdivision as well as the Tagalog word “Sarap” (English: Delicious).

“The name BF HomeSarap was formed out of my intention to include the local community’s name while reflecting people’s enjoyment of good home-cooked food. It had to be catchy and relevant at the same time. After searching for possible combinations of words, I came up with ‘sarap’ to partner with BF Homes,” she stated.

BF HomeSarap was created on April 2019 by Antenor reflecting her interest of good, home-cooked food her children would enjoy while establishing ties with the many members of the BF Homes community who share her interest.

The result? The membership of BF HomeSarap on Facebook went from zero to over eight thousand as of this writing. The members were a big mix of food enthusiasts as well as home-based cooks who are quietly selling food or drinks through their respective small-sized businesses. Already several small-time food sellers posted food or beverages for sale complete with contact numbers, prices, ways on how to avail of ordered items and the like. BF HomeSarap excludes the bigger, commercial food sellers giving more space and priority to the small ones. Along the way, there were a lot of buyers who had been searching for tasty home-cooked food. The result is BF HomeSarap establishing itself as a very lively online community whose members are united by home-cooked food and delicacies.

Of course, not just anyone could join the BF HomeSarap FB group. With the help of a few friends (who lived in BF Homes for a long time) and her daughter, Antenor and her co-administrators carefully review the many pending applications of FB users who wanted to join in as well as the many private messages sent.

“The membership of BF HomeSarap just kept on growing fast. Along the way, we made sure it would not become just another buy-and-sell type of Facebook group. I really wanted it to be an online community about good, home-cooked food and BF Homes which will be engaged with good quality content from time to time. I really want community engagement,” she said.

To engage the BF HomeSarap group members, Antenor researched online about the latest food trends, what kind of food people like lately, cooking tips, recipes and the like. The result was her releasing unique content in the form of articles, short videos, special greetings and customized images that get posted in the group occasionally. This approach of hers helped keep BF HomeSarap interesting and engaging, and prevented it from becoming stale or getting too flooded with sales-related posts.

For the future, Antenor stated that she is still striving to come up with ideas to make life better for the sellers and buyers of the group. She is exploring how to establish a dedicated delivery system that will carry BF HomeSarap’s name and cater to the clients’ needs. She and her team are also looking for other enclaves around BF Homes that could possibly host the next edition of the BF HomeSarap Community Food Fair this year.

With almost 9,000 members counted (and growing) and continued daily engagement, BF HomeSarap is undoubtedly the premier FB group focused on home-cooked food with the people of BF Homes in mind. Even FB users from the rest of South Metro Manila noticed the group.

“BF Homes is very unique,” Antenor said in relation to the group’s phenomenal growth and influence.

The group is not even a year old, and already it achieved a lot of milestones even spawning three related groups: Merville HomeSarap, Antipolo HomeSarap and MetroEast HomeSarap.

Ditas Antenor’s Message to the Readers

“When I cook, I continue to engage the community. There is, indeed, a wealth of home-cooked food in this community. You just need to look for it. You just need to know who cooked it. Also, level up your food in terms of nutrition and quality. If you want good food for your family, aim for home-cooked. It can be cheaper and yet it can be prepared with the same love and care for the family.”


Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. Also my fantasy book The World of Havenor is still available in paperback and e-book format. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com

For more South Metro Manila community news and developments, come back here soon. Also say NO to fake news, NO to irresponsible journalism, NO to misinformation, NO to plagiarists and NO to sinister propaganda when it comes to news and developments.

Note: Article cover photo contains images from the book “SULÓ: Where Taste Was Style”, written by author/founder Erlinda Panlilio, published in 2015 by Anvil Publishing.

Where to Donate to Help Victims of Taal Volcano Eruption

It is depressing to watch news or see social media postings about many people whose lives got disrupted by the recent eruption of Taal Volcano which spew not only a massive amount of ash into the air (affecting Metro Manila) but also caused physical damage on all communities close to it.

Many people had to leave their homes and wait for assistance from the many emergency response personnel (who are undoubtedly working hard) deployed by the local authorities.

Meanwhile, several donation-driven initiatives or charitable operations to provide public assistance (in cash or in kind) to the victims were launched very recently. For its part, the City Government of Muntinlupa approved legislation of a P3,000,000 donation to Taal Volcano Eruption victims. The City Government also launched a public donation drive as well.

If you are here in the South Metro Manila area of the Philippines and you wish to donate, consider the following:

BARANGAY BF HOMES

Where: Barangay BF Homes Public Safety Department, Barangay BF Homes hall, Elsie Gatches street, Paranaque City

Contact number: 8809-8843

What to donate: Drinking water (encouraged by Barangay Captain Paolo Marquez), clothes, towels, blankets, food, toiletries, N95 masks, candles and matches.

Online donation option: None available.

OPERATION BLESSING FOUNDATION PHILIPPINES

Where: 5TH floor, Sagittarius Building, 111 HV Dela Costa street, Salcedo Village, Makati City

Contact numbers: 8663-4701, 8663-4710 and 0939-9215543

What to donate: Food, clean water, clothes, slippers, kitchenware, diapers, milk, sleeping mats, blankets and face masks.

Online donation option: https://www.obphil.com/home/be-a-partner/

Cash donation option: Operation Blessing Foundation Philippines bank account numbers

BDO: 0030000-55279

BPI: 3001-0040-33

Metro Bank: 270-3-27050273-4

Union Bank: 00-216-072163-9

NEW LIFE COMMUNITY CARE

Where: 2 Don Manolo Drive, Alabang Hills Village, Muntinlupa City

Contact number: 8809-1542, 8809-1543 and 8809-1533

What to donate: Cash, sleeping mats, blankets and food items.

Online donation option: https://newlife.ph/give/taal-disaster-relief

VICTORY ALABANG

Where: Classroom 1, Victory Alabang, 4th level, Festival Mall, Filinvest City, Muntinlupa City

Contact number: 8771-1212

What to donate: Canned goods, bottled water, medicine, face masks, blankets, new towels, toiletries (toothbrush, toothpaste and soap) and used clothes.

Online donation option: None available

CITY GOVERNMENT OF MUNTINLUPA

Where: Annex Building, Muntinlupa City Hall, Muntinlupa City

Contact number: 8861-6623 (Social Services Department)

What to donate: Any kind of donation.

Online donation option: None available

COMMERCENTER (Until January 17)

Where: Commerce Avenue corner Filinvest Avenue, Filinvest City, Alabang, Muntinlupa City

Contact number: 8893-1450

What to donate: Canned goods (preferably those easy to open), flashlights, ready-to-eat food, bottled water, face masks, hygiene kits and towels, blankets and mats, basic medicine, clean clothes, paper plates, cups, plastic utensils

Online donation option: None available

PERGOLA MALL (Until January 22)

Where: Aguirre Avenue, Barangay BF Homes, Parañaque

Contact number: 09173752299

What to donate: Laundry items, toiletries, medicine, children’s clothes and toys, bottled water, dog and cat food, food containers, pillows, mats, blankets, slippers

Online donation option: None available

MADISON GALERIES (Until January 17)

Where: 398 Don Jesus Boulevard, Alabang Hills, Muntinlupa City

Contact number: 88770702

What to donate: Canned goods, bottled water, medicine, mats, blankets, towels, face masks, clothes, bags, whistles, flashlights and hygiene kits.

Online donation option: None available

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So there you have it. These are the ongoing donation drive campaigns to help the Taal Volcano Eruption victims. The victims need your help right now.

Note: Picture used for this article was sources from Operation Blessing Foundation Philippines Facebook page.

 

Century Club of Tahanan Celebrates Christmas 2019

The Century Club of Tahanan, Inc. (CCTI), a private club of senior citizens living in Tahanan Village, Barangay BF Homes, Parañaque City, had its annual Christmas party held at their village’s multi-purpose facility (covered basketball court) on the evening of December 6.

According to CCTI president Florencia Umali, there were roughly two hundred guests who attended, including the visitors. When asked about their club’s total membership, she told me that they currently have four hundred and thirty-nine members all in all.

 

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Century Club president Florencia Umali with guests who posed for this website.
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The guests lined up for food.
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The registration table and the dining tables.

Apart from enjoying the delicious food and drinks, nice music was played by hired musicians that kept everyone entertained.

In addition, varied local officials visited and greeted the guests. Parañaque City mayor Edwin Olivarez, his brother Congressman Eric, City Councilor Tess de Asis and former Barangay BF Homes chairwoman Florencia “Beng” Amurao arrived to personally meet the guests and have their pictures taken with them.

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The Olivarezes and Councilor Tess de Asis with the guests.

Sometime after De Asis, Amurao and the Olivarezes left, City Councilors Wahoo Sotto, Juvan Esplana and Bong Benzon arrived together. After greeting the guests, they each delivered short speeches and gave the people some updates regarding city legislation.

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City Councilors Wahoo Sotto, Juvan Esplana and Bong Benzon with Umali during the raffle draw.
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City Councilor Sotto updates the guests with latest developments.

Finally the last city personality to arrive (after the City Councilors left) was former Congressman Gus Tambunting. He danced with the guests and delivered his remarks.

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Century Club president Florencia Umali with former Congressman Gus Tambunting.

Throughout the evening, music was played, special prizes (including those donated by the local politicians) were raffled off, guests danced and socializing transpired. Like in previous years, Century Club’s Christmas part continued to not only be a fun event for the members and invited visitors, but managed to attract the local personalities and local authority officials.

One last thing I want to emphasize in closing this. There was one local community print media news publication based in BF Homes that incorrectly published that Century Club’s Christmas party was scheduled to happen on December 4, 2019. Upon reading that publication, I immediately called and verified with club president Umali who responded that December 6 is the precise date of their Christmas party. At the party, I asked other Century Club officials if they had previously planned to organize their Christmas party on December 4. They officially denied it and stated that December 6 has always been the original and precise date of schedule for their party.

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Fake news? Human error? Reckless editing? 

So what’s with the incorrect publishing of the Century Club Christmas party date as December 4? Error with editing? A lapse of the mind? Lying to the public? Irresponsible journalism? Imagine advertising your business with such a careless local community print media publication.

Let me end this with a verse from the Holy Bible.

Lying lips are an abomination to the LORD, But those who deal truthfully are His delight.

Proverbs 12: 22 (NKJV)

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