1 July 2019, Paris, France – Inspired by the growing success of its ongoing cultural initiative “Ang Aking Pilipinas”, the Embassy has partnered with the Hiligaynon Association in France to set-up a second Philippine cultural class, which caters to Filipino migrant children of the younger age group of 10 years and below.

The first session of this new summer class entitled “Paaralan sa Embahada” was held on Saturday, 29 June 2019, at the newly renovated public area of the chancery’s Consular Section. There have been 21 Paris-based children of various ages between 5 to 10 years old, who have pre-registered. It is anticipated that the complete group will be in attendance by the second session, next Saturday, July 8.

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29 June 2019, Paris – Philippine Embassy Minister/Consul General Aileen Mendiola-Rau (center) with the organizers and participants of the first session of “Paaralan sa Embahada” at the Embassy in Paris. Also in the photo: Hiligaynon President Dennis Mana-ay (3rd from right) and Consul Christina Rola McKernan (3rd from back left).

In her opening remarks, Minister and Consul General Aileen Mendiola-Rau welcomed the young students and their parents to the first session of “Paaralan sa Embahada”. She said that “it is important that at an early age we spark interest in our youngsters to learn about their Filipino heritage. By discovering their roots while they are children, they will grow up fully appreciating that their identity has been enriched by the traditions of both the Philippines and France. We are pleased to have had this opportunity to partner with the Hiligaynon Association in France on this project and we hope to make this a continuing initiative for the children of our Filipino migrant community”.

Rosemarie Chazelas, the teacher of the Embassy-organized “Ang Aking Pilipinas” classes for Filipino teens and pre-teens, is also the lead teacher for these summer sessions. Joined by her two teaching assistants, Ms. Chazelas started the class with teaching them the Filipino basics including the Filipino alphabet, numbers and other words. The children were happy to learn the traditional Filipino action songs such as “Sampung Mga Daliri” and “Paa, Tuhod, Balikat Ulo” and to also make their first “eroplanong papel” (paper airplane).

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29 June 2019, Paris – Snapshots of the first session of the “Paaralan sa Embahada. Center photo shows Minister/Consul General Aileen Mendiola-Rau giving her opening remarks. Two other photos show the children following the Filipino action songs with teacher Rosemarie Chazelas, teaching assistants Dee Apilado and Jevren Olalia with the participation of Hiligaynon President Dennis Mana-ay.

Paaralan sa Embahada will run for the next four Saturdays of July 2019. For more information, visit the Embassy’s website and Facebook page. END.