The Center for Art, New Ventures & Sustainable Development (CANVAS)

CANVAS promotes greater awareness and appreciation for Philippine art, culture and the environment. CANVAS also explores the use of art to promote reflection, discussion and debate on selected social issues, particularly national identity, free expression and sustainable development.
Jun 2, 2016

Bookgiving in an Upland Farming Community

Just a brief update from one of our partners in the field:

Earlier this year, the Philippine Development Initiatives and Assistance for the Rural Sectors (PDIARS), a research and advocacy institution focused on farmers and fisherfolks, helped to distribute our books to 30 children living in Sitio Catmon in Rodriguez (formerly Montalban) Rizal.

Sitio Catmon is an upland (mountain) farming community. Most of the residents, especially the peasant women rely on farming seasonal and indigenous vegetables and fruits such as banana, avocado, sweet potato tops, eggplant, etc.  They would later sell their produce to a nearby private subdivision, or at town. Men usually drive passenger tricycles, work at construction sites, or at the batching plant.

PDIARS partnered with Amihan, a national organization of peasant women for the bookgiving activity. Two books focused on the environment, “Inang Kalikasan’s (Mother Nature’s) Bad Hair Day” and “Message in the Sand” were given away. To complement and deepen the event, concepts of environmental protection as well as climate change were also introduced to the children.

 

*** To date, CANVAS has given away nearly 90,000 books to children in disadvantaged communities all over the Philippines such as Sitio Catmon. This would not have been possible without your continued and generous support.

From the bottom of our hearts, and on behalf of all the children who have received books to call their very own, Thank You!

Links:

Mar 2, 2016

Books for the Lumads

Some of the Lumad children
Some of the Lumad children

Lumad is a collective term, meaning homegrown or indigenous. Among those usually included as Lumad are the Subanen, B’laan, Mandaya, Higaonon, Banwaon, Talaandig, Ubo, Manobo, T’boli, Tiruray, Bagobo,Tagakaolo, Dibabawon, Manguangan, and Mansaka. They are among the poorest and marginalized in the Philippines.

Ironically, many of them live in areas of the Philippines thought to be rich in natural resources and minerals. But, not only do they not partake of the fruits of these riches, they are often caught in the crossfire - both literally and figuratively - of competing economic and political players. 

EIGHT hundred Lumad arrived in Manila late in 2015. They had traveled from different parts of Mindanao to bring their stories to Manila, demand justice for their dead, and fight for peace in their communities. 

Among the contingent were some 100 children and adolescents. CANVAS took the opportunity to learn from their stories, share with them some of our own stories, and work with theater actors who generously gave their time and talent to entertain the children with an interactive and creative storytelling session.

Each child then received one of our books.

It was not a trivial gift - for some of them, it was the first book they would get to call their own. More importantly, for these children, caught as they are in circumstances and challenges we can only imagine and try to understand, these books take on a special meaning. 

The stories provide them with a sanctuary... a safe haven... even for just a short while. And because the children get to own the books that we bring - books that we could not have published without you - they get to take that sanctuary back home with them. 

On their behalf, we thank you all for your continuing support and generosity. We are all truly and sincerely grateful.

A storytelling session for the children
A storytelling session for the children
Rapt attention
Rapt attention
A theatrical reading of the story
A theatrical reading of the story
A book to call their own
A book to call their own

Links:

Dec 8, 2015

A Father's Pride

"My daughter
"My daughter's a fighter."

We went to the cancer ward of the Philippine Children's Medical Center (PCMC) this morning to give away our books. We brought along our resident caricaturist, Bobbi Jolbitado, and gave his art as our Christmas gift to the kids and their parents. This man asked Bobbi to portray his daughter as a warrior because she's a fighter. 

We thought we'd share this heartwarming moment with all of you.

You should also know that we gave 500 copies of our latest children's book "Inang Kalikasan's (Mother Nature's) Bad Hair Day" to the PCMC for their outreach activities this Christmas Season.

Thank you for your continuing support!

 

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