National Commission on Indigenous Peoples Commissioner Jennifer Pia Sibug-Las turns over the Epanaw Coffee Table Books to Philippine Consul General Neil Frank R. Ferrer, during their meeting at the Philippine Consulate General in San Francisco on 9 December 2021. (San Francisco PCG photo)
SAN FRANCISCO, USA – The Philippine Consulate General in San Francisco on 9 December 2021 welcomed Commissioner Jennifer Pia Sibug-Las of the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples (NCIP), who is in the United States for an official visit.
Philippine Consul General Neil Frank R. Ferrer received from Commissioner Sibug-Las copies of the NCIP’s Epanaw Coffee Table Books, a three-volume compendium of the cultures, lifestyles, beliefs, and rituals of the 101 officially recognized Indigenous Peoples (IPs) of the Philippines.
Through Project Epanaw, which means “journey,” the NCIP seeks to memorialize the enduring customs and traditions of Philippine IPs, and highlight the importance of protecting their ancestral domains for future generations of IPs. The coffee table books will be added to the Filipiniana collection of the Consulate’s Sentro Rizal Library.
During his meeting with Commissioner Sibug-Las, Consul General Ferrer expressed his support for the NCIP’s efforts “to promote and preserve the way of life of the Philippines’ IP communities.”
“The Consulate supports the initiatives of the NCIP, such as Project Epanaw, to increase public awareness and understanding on our indigenous peoples, whom we owe our distinct identity as Filipinos. We thank the NCIP, under the leadership of Chairperson Allen Capuyan, for including the Philippine Consulate in San Francisco in its book project,” Consul General Ferrer said.
For her part, Commissioner Sibug-Las explored possible partnerships with the Consulate that will promote the diversity of the Philippine IPs, targeting both the Filipino American and the American audience. She also said that social enterprises that use weaves and designs from IP communities are also welcome, as long as these businesses accord due respect to the beliefs and customs of the IPs that they are promoting.
Commissioner Sibug-Las, who hails from the Manobo tribe in Mindanao, served as national spokesperson of the Tribal Communities Association of the Philippines prior to joining the NCIP. She recently met with Philippine Ambassador Jose Manuel G. Romualdez in Washington, D.C., as part of her official visit to the U.S.
(L-R) Philippine Consul General Neil Frank R. Ferrer, Deputy Consul General Raquel R. Solano, Vice Consul Adrian Audrey L. Baccay, Consul Vanessa G. Bago-Llona, meet with National Commission on Indigenous Peoples Commissioner Jennifer Pia Sibug-Las (first from right) at the Philippine Consulate General in San Francisco on 9 December 2021. (San Francisco PCG photo)
Consul Vanessa G. Bago-Llona (left) and Vice Consul Adrian Audrey L. Baccay (second from left) give National Commission on Indigenous Peoples Commissioner Jennifer Pia Sibug-Las (right) a tour of the Museo ng Lahing Pilipino (Philippine Folklife Museum), during the latter’s visit to the Philippine Consulate General in San Francisco on 9 December 2021. (San Francisco PCG photo)