SAN FRANCISCO – On Dec. 21, more than 200 children and their parents packed the cafeteria of Bessie Carmichael Elementary School to celebrate the annual “Pasko sa SOMA” (Christmas in SOMA) event. The holiday celebration is hosted by the Filipino Education Center and its Galing Bata Afterschool Program, the only K-8 Filipino bicultural after school program in San Francisco.
Besides enjoying the performances by students from kindergarten to 7th grade, attendees also were invited to participate in a special fun activity to learn about energy saving with PG&E. At the event, 10 students won the game and each took a PG&E stuffed gift bag home.
“With budget cut all over California, we’re grateful to have community partners like PG&E to help in supporting Filipino families and their children who would otherwise not have the opportunity nor experience of enjoying Christmas,” said Charm Consolacion, site coordinator for Galing Bata.
Galing Bata means “Good Kid” in Tagalog. Since 2001, the Galing Bata Bilingual Program at Bessie Carmichael/Filipino Education Center has provided quality guidance, care and protection to students from kindergarten to 8th grade during the after-school hours and during six weeks in the summer. The program provides academic cultural and linguistic bi-literacy in English and Filipino (Tagalog) and promotes the development of a healthy bicultural identity by harmonizing the Filipino and American identities of the children.