We believe in the potential of the Philippines. In the strength of its people. And in the untapped power of its diaspora: the more than 10 million Filipino migrants scattered across the face of the Earth.
We work to build bridges back.
We are a group of mobilizers, storytellers, and builders working to co-create a stronger Philippines. See our full team here.
Homeland Task Force Leader
our advisors & contributors.
“Balikbayan” means “returnee.” It’s a word that holds special weight in the Philippines, where 10% of the national population lives overseas. One of its most popular uses is in relation to the balikbayan box: a care package that’s traditionally filled up with goods and shipped back to one’s family in the motherland.
We want to redefine “balikbayan” to mean more than just temporary or symbolic return. In brief or in spirit. We want it to stand for something deeper: a culture of engagement and caring that’s more active, systemic, and anchored to needs and assets in the motherland. Learn more about how you can get involved through our fellowship program!
When my friends come to me screaming, “I have kwento!” in the most Taglish accents they can muster, I always feel a jolt of excitement run through me. I approach them, eyes wide, ears open, ready to listen to their story. Whether it’s a brief kilig moment with their crush, a rant they need to let out, a deep conversation with a friend or a quick update about their day, I always enjoy hearing what they have to say. No matter what they’re itching to tell, the words are etched in their histories, the past gives way to the present, and the stories they share shape a part of who they are.
Daniel recounts the surprising realities of living in the Philippines as a Filipino American — and how this may have changed his understanding of his role in the world. This essay is part of the Kaya Constellation series. Looking outside the plexiglass window was (almost) a mistake. Our visibility was limited by the dense, charcoal-colored clouds that […]