Los Angeles, California – On the weekend of November 5 – 6, the National Alliance for Filipino Concerns (NAFCON USA) held its National Conference and General Assembly attended by more than 200 individuals representing 57 Filipino organizations and institutions across the United States. Under the theme of Umahon at Magpunyagi! Together We Rise and Overcome Adversities, attendees discussed common issues, concerns, and concrete opportunities to take action for the welfare of Filipinos.  

 Conference workshops addressed access to health for Filipinos, anti-asian violence in pandemic, police brutality, disaster response and relief, and rampant political disinformation. Panelists included representatives from the National Nurses United, Philippine Nurses Association, Filipino Community Health Board, Kapwa Health Collective, Foundation for Philippine Progress, and Migrante USA, as well as family members of Angelo Quinto, who was unjustly killed by Antioch police; members of the Roque family, survivors of a hate crime in North Hollywood; and three community organizers violently arrested in Manhattan during the visit of President Marcos, Jr., after advocating for justice and accountability for the victims of Martial Law and continued repression of activists.

Rosella De Leon, Executive Director of the Foundation for Philippine Progress, giving a keynote address to the participants of NAFCON 2022 Conference: Umahon at Magpunyagi: Together We Rise and Overcome Adversities

“The history of the Filipino people is a history of overcoming many human-made adversities, struggling to create a better future for all, and rising together as a nation and people,” said keynote speaker, Rossella De Leon, Executive Director of Foundation for Philippine Progress. “What sets NAFCON apart is that it not only provides avenues for us to learn history, it leads us in making new history together.”

Following the conference, NAFCON member organizations elected its national council and new executive board, with Nerissa Allegretti of Fellowship of Filipino Migrants – FFM as President; Karen Roxas of Filipino Migrant Center as Vice President; Nikki De Leon, Founder of the Filipino Bayanihan Center Oregon, as Secretary General; Charles Ramilo of the Filipino Community Center as Treasurer; and Kami Yamamoto of Kapwa Health Collective as Education Officer.

Newly-elected Executive Board of NAFCON for a three-year term (2022-2025)

“The 20+ organizations in NAFCON are now ready to work together to achieve our three-year plan to launch community-based health and education programs, continue our relief and rehabilitation efforts, push back attacks on democratic rights in the form of malicious disinformation, and provide concrete solutions to government neglect utilizing the bayanihan spirit,” said newly elected NAFCON President Nerissa Allegretti.

Nerissa Allegretti, newly elected President of NAFCON presenting alongside Terrence Valen, NAFCON’s President (October 2014 – October 2022)

“With NAFCON’s 20th year commemoration approaching next year, we will continue to strengthen the alliance through continued collaboration, unity building, education, and taking action to affirm human dignity, democracy, people’s rights, social welfare, and pro-people policies for our kababayan both here in the U.S. and back home,” adds Allegretti.