The FAPNG officers with Penny Sage-embo (center) after the turnover of Christmas donations towards Tembari children on Sunday. Others in photo: newly-elected FAPNG president Rey Angeles (third from left); Hayward Sagembo, Tembari president (second from right); and former FAPNG president Tony Valdez (right).
By ALFREDO P HERNANDEZ
A Friend of Tembari Children
THE Tembari children sing-sing group had a grand time performing at the Christmas party of the Filipino community on Sunday.
It was the first time for the children to show their dancing talents before a crowd of Filipinos.
The Christmas party was held at the Don Bosco Technological Institute in Port Moresby.
They had performed the previous Saturday at the Botanical Garden as their share in the celebration of the International Children’s Day. But the audience was mostly locals and a handful of tourists.
On the other hand, it was a first for the Filipino Association of PNG (FAPNG) to invite a sing-sing dance troupe at its annual Christmas party as part of the entertainment segment.
The children’s gig was not part of FAPNG earlier plans.
A month ago, one of the FAPNG officers emailed me to say that they would like to invite 10 of the Tembari children as their guests at the party.
I’m familiar with the association’s yearly party and it was usually parlor games for the adults and the children, little speeches and lunch and exchange gifts among the children.
Knowing that the Tembari children have their own sing-sing group for traditional dances from their villages back in Oro province, in the northern side of Papua New Guinea, I proposed that they should also perform at the party – for free.
When the news got around at the Tembari center, all the kids became excited and wanted to join.
However, the Tembari management had decided to send only 18, who immediately rehearsed their repertoire – a two-dance segment representing two dances from their villages.
The Tembari kids were awesome in their colorful village attire and in their dances.
A number of Pinoys had their pictures taken with the kids.
Highlighting the celebration, newly-elected FAPNG president Rey Angeles presented several boxes of Christmas presents to Tembari founder Penny Sage-embo and president Hayward Sagembo.
The goodies had been raised by the association from members’ donations.
And for about three weeks, FAPNG carried out a “drop box” campaign in which it posted boxes at some major shops and supermarkets in Port Moresby for toys and other items.
Thanking FAPNG, Penny told the audience that the Filipino community has been supporting the Tembari children for quite some time now.
“I feel very grateful for the wonderful gestures of the Filipinos here in Port Moresby towards our children,” Penny said.
FAPNG is very familiar with Tembari children.
Since the administration of former president Joey Sena (2009), the association has been donating a portion of its funds raised from two yearly concerts featuring known Filipino entertainers.
These two concerts are held every February – as Valentine’s concert – and every September as part of the Independence day celebration known as” Hatid Saya”.
The Tembari children’s sing-sing group is also performing at functions to raise funds for the unfortunate children in Oro province.
Tembari is planning to put up a day care facility and a preschool for these children.
Prospective donors who need more information may contact Patison Kopada, TCC administrator, on phone 3422047 and cell phone 726 19552
A Tembari sing-sing group performs at the FAPNG party on Sunday.
Ms Phyllis Topogo, Queen of Tembari (right) with two of her escorts during their performance.
A Tembari sing-sing group performs a traditional dance depicting the story of Noah’s ark and the Great Floods. – All pictures by AP HERNANDEZ, Port Moresby, PNG
Email the blogger: firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com