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PCCM meets with Filipino community


Leaders of Winnipeg's Filipino organizations meet with PCCM leadership team. Photo by Rodge Lopez

On February 16, 2024, officers of the Philippine Canadian Centre of Manitoba (PCCM) led by its president Virgie Gayot met with representatives of Winnipeg's various Filipino organizations to update them about PCCM's financial status and its various programs. 

During this forum, PCCM treasurer Lou Fernandez reported that as of January 31, 2024, PCCM's mortgage payable was at $747,482.25.

Gayot said, "I am aware that our community wants to hear the financial status of PCCM... how much mortgage is left for our centre. Although the financial report is one of the major topics on the agenda, I also called the meeting to connect with the community leaders to share each other’s program/activities/events... I would say this meeting is a good way for us to communicate and listen to each other."

The upcoming AGM on April 16, 2024, was also discussed. Close to 30 community organization representatives attended the meeting held at the PCCM’s multipurpose room.

"It was actually a productive meeting... I encouraged them to be involved and to participate in our projects... we are here not to compete with each other but to act as one community... we must unite and support each other," added Gayot.

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A Night with Rachel benefit concert

RACHEL solo red dress RACHEL sequins image.jpeg CHRIS RACHEL
A duet with Jovelle
Representatives of Share the Magic Book Program, Chris Melnick (left) and Ketket (right).

Winnipeg attorney by day and singer by night, Rachel Punzalan performed at the Park Theatre on May 28 in her “A Night with Rachel” concert.

“It was a great show, better than what I had envisioned! exclaimed Rachel. “The talents were astounding!”

Rachel’s guests for the evening were the dynamic 12/21 Band, currently recording new music, jazz singer Jovelle Balani, Faith Arintok and Rodel Olesco.

 The show was directed by Jan Yu and Gail Ignacio was the technical director.

The event raised $10,000 for underprivileged gifted children at the Manila Science High School in the Philippines. The Share the Magic Book Program here in Winnipeg received $1,000, and $500 went to a family who lost their home in a recent apartment fire in Winnipeg.

Chris Melnick of the Share the Magic Book Program said, “Share the Magic was honoured to receive a generous donation from Attorney Rachel Punzalan’s My Mission Society fund-raiser ... Thank you Rachel for your vision, talents, and efforts to make this world a better place. And WOW can she sing!”

It was amazing!

Rachel with Faith and Rodel
Rachel with 1221 and Faith

BCBP Winnipeg Mission breakfast meeting

Written by Paul Morrow Published on .

BCBP Winnipeg Mission breakfast meeting

by Luis Santiago

Couple sharers Mark and Patricia Co from Toronto

On a bright, sunny morning of September 14th, the Brotherhood of Christian Businessmen and Professionals (BCBP) Winnipeg Mission held its second breakfast fellowship meeting at the Canad Inns Destination Centre Garden City on McPhillips Street. The good weather in the run up to the fall season added to the excitement and positive vibes in what turned out to be another successful gathering of business people and professionals over a cup of coffee and hot breakfast. This sequel to the inaugural breakfast held in July was highlighted by an inspirational talk given by a guest couple who had flown all the way from Toronto, Ontario. About 50 people gathered for the breakfast, almost half of whom were first-time attendees. Some of the attendees were active members of BCBP and other Catholic faith communities in the Philippines, while others were there to discover what the BCBP breakfast meeting was all about.

Attendees to breakfast meetings are invited by members to spend about two hours of Saturday mornings to share a meal, meet friends old and new, do networking, laugh a bit, and share nostalgia about community life. Breakfast meetings are also sources of inspiration and encouragement, and to some people, they are an enriching experience to build relationships and grow in the Christian faith. The meeting held in September did just that, as couple Mark Anthony and Patricia Co, who live in Toronto with their two young kids, generously shared their time by coming over to Winnipeg to speak about life challenges and how they have overcome through their faith and Christian conviction. Their testimonials definitely provided inspiration and encouragement, a food for thought that easily made one’s Saturday morning more meaningful (and soulful).

BCBP is a Christian community that draws its members from among business leaders and professionals who seek to practice Christian values in all aspect of their daily lives, most particularly in the workplace. BCBP has its roots in the Philippines, when it was founded in July 1980, and has since grown to over 117 full chapters in the Philippines with outreach missions in the US and Canada. In Canada alone, BCBP is present in major cities such as in the Greater Toronto Area, Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Montreal, and in Hamilton. BCBP Canada is headed by Etchin Sumagang, while BCBP Winnipeg is currently headed by Ramon Sales.

BCBP Winnipeg is the youngest mission in Canada. Its inaugural breakfast was only recently held in July. Two more breakfast meetings are slated to be held before the year ends. If you would like to break bread and experience the BCBP fellowship, do come and join forthcoming meetings set on October 19th and November 30th.

BCBP Winnipeg is recognized as a Catholic lay organization by the Archdiocese of Winnipeg. Its current mission team is composed of Ramon Sales (Mission Head), Joseph Lachica (Formation Head), Abraham Salvador (Breakfast Head), Joseph Resurreccion (Program Services Head), Leila Eugenio Guerrero (Teaching Ministry Head) and Doris Reyes (Treasurer).

Interested in joining a breakfast meeting? Contact the BCBP Winnipeg Secretariat at

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BCBP Winnipeg Core Group with guest speakers and some of the guests.
BCBP Winnipeg’s second breakfast meeting guests, speakers, and regular members.

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Chemo Savvy makes waves at Canadian nationals!

by Regina Urbano

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Chemo Savvy Inc.’s dragon boat racing team had a great trip to the 2019 Canadian National Championships in Regina on August 10. Despite high winds, long delays in marshalling and cancelled races, the team performed well. Chemo Savvy made history as the first breast cancer team to compete in the senior women’s category at the nationals. Competitors included former Olympians and world champions.

The Chemo Savvy team paddled at their planned pace, experienced excellent race times and achieved their goal of completing the 2000m race in under 13 minutes! A huge factor in the team’s success was the dedication and patience of the coaches Sylvie, Tara, Yvonne, and Marlene – all of whom are breast cancer survivors.

A diagnosis of breast cancer can be devastating. These women, with their fierce determination, are examples of how to triumph and thrive. Chemo Savvy Incorporated is a charitable organization dedicated to:

  • educating the public about breast cancer and its prevention;
  • improving the physical and psychological well-being of breast cancer survivors through fitness activities;
  • providing support to individuals living with breast cancer; and providing volunteer support to other charitable organizations with similar objectives.

Through participation in Dragon Boat Racing, every member of Chemo Savvy promotes physical and emotional well-being.

If you or someone you know is a breast cancer survivor and interested in fitness, e-mail the team at or check their website at

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RC Walk-in Chiropractic Grand Opening – July 14

The clouds parted after some stormy weather on July 14, just in time to celebrate the grand opening of RC Walk-in Chiropractic, outside the Northgate Mall. The friendly staff hosted visitors while Chef Allan Pineda served up great food from the grill. Owner Richie Cabigting and staff congratulate the raf e prize winners and extend thanks to all the visitors and well wishers.