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Australia Philippines Service League events in 2022

BY EVELYN OPILAS – The Australia Philippines Services League (APSL) readjusted its activities for 2022, focusing on events held locally, that is, within the Blacktown local government area where it is based.

APSL President Chris Pilao
APSL President Chris Pilao

In a meeting held late February, APSL President Chris Pilao informed other officers that ANZAC Day and the Philippine Independence Day commemorations will be observed in the LGA, as will its Leadership Forum in November.

“We’ll join Rooty Hill RSL for the ANZAC Day dawn service at Pinegrove and come to breakfast at West HQ,” he said, adding that most APSL members have declined to join the ANZAC Day March in the Sydney CBD, citing missed participation for two years due to COVID-19 restrictions.

“We have shown commitment through fifteen years of marching continuously shoulder-to-shoulder with Allied troops, rain or shine, in the city, and many of our members have indicated they’d rather join local activities now,” Col. Pilao pointed out.

As for June 12, celebrated among Filipino communities worldwide to mark the Philippines’ Independence Day, or Araw ng Kalayaan in the Filipino language, Col. Pilao said APSL will host a dinner show 11 June at West HQ’s Chu Restaurant, featuring singer Marcus Rivera and several local Filipino entertainers.

Details are being threshed out for APSL’s Leadership Forum in November, reviving its previous fora held in 2012 and 2013.

Meanwhile, APSL members congratulated Nar and Bella Ignacio on their 50th wedding anniversary last December and wished James Vargas speedy recover from a recent surgery. APSL comprises former Philippine armed forces staff and descendants of WWII veterans who call Australia home.