In August last year, the NCCA and the Onjon ni Ivadoy Association signed the memorandum of agreement to advance Ibaloy heritage through the conduct of series of activities that would educate the public about the culture and traditions of the very first settlers of Baguio City and Benguet.
“Our identity and integrity as a nation are underpinned by its heritage. When conscious efforts are geared toward safeguarding culture and tradition, the society is enriched and the nation is transformed,” said Tong-an, an Ibaloy from Bokod, Benguet, who was the guest of honor during the recent Ibaloy Day celebration in the city.
“If the Ibaloy tribe will continue to inspire others by educating and raising awareness about our way of life, we will be able to help reinforce the nation’s spirit of solidarity and we become a veritable instrument toward nation building,” he added.
Through the project dubbed as "Sustaining Public Awareness of Ibaloy History through Akhad Eskwela Katutubo," the Onjon ni Ivadoy Association will gather cultural workers, masters, consultants, lecturers, and performers in Baguio and suburbs as resource persons who will help develop an Ibaloy cultural education program.
Cultural bearers will conduct series of lectures, performances, workshops, mount art installations and exhibits on Ibaloy culture and history at the Ibaloy Heritage Garden at Burnham Park.
Other NCCA-supported projects that will foster appreciation of the Ibaloy customs and practices include the Benguet Music Festival of the Benguet Provincial Government(P200,000.00); Local History Writing Workshop of the Kamora National High School in Kabayan ( P185,000.00); Multiculturalism and Ethnic Identity Experiencing Authenticity in the City - University of Baguio Alumni Foundation, Inc. ( P 375,000.00); Training of Indigenous Peoples Local Researchers in the Cordilleras on Documentation of Traditional Culture and Arts of the Cordillera Peoples’ Alliance (P100,000.00); Cultural and Educational Music Video Album and Translation of the Ibaloy "Ikul" CD Album in Benguet Kalanguya and Kankana-ey Languages of Gleemore C. Makie (P100,000.00), and Documentation of Traditional Culture and Arts in Kabayan: Values, Customs and Traditions, Poetry and Songs of Kabayan local government ( P 100,000.00). (JDP/RMC- PIA CAR)
By Redjie Melvic Cawis