On the evening of September 15, 2023, the Qatar National Library (QNL) came alive with the rich and colorful tapestry of Filipino culture. This cultural extravaganza was a collaborative effort between QNL and the Philippine International School – Qatar (PISQ), with the generous support of the Philippine Embassy in Doha. The guest of honor for this remarkable event was none other than HE Lillibeth V. Pono, the Philippine Ambassador to the State of Qatar.
The festivities commenced with a symbolic ribbon-cutting ceremony, led by Her Excellency and distinguished members of the Philippine Embassy-Doha, alongside prominent Filipino community leaders. This momentous act marked the beginning of an unforgettable journey into the heart of Filipino heritage.
One of the highlights of the evening was an enchanting art exhibit that featured the talents of Filipino youth, students, teachers, and accomplished community artists residing in Qatar. The showcased artworks eloquently portrayed the unique cultural facets of the Philippines and served as a testament to the creativity and skills of the Filipino expatriate community in the State of Qatar.
But before we delve further into the festivities, it’s essential to express our heartfelt gratitude to Ms. Ellen Floro, QNL Librarian, for her tireless coordination and dedication from the concept to execution of this phenomenal event. Her efforts were instrumental in bringing the magic of Filipino culture to life at the heart of Qatar.
As the aroma of Filipino delicacies wafted through the air, attendees were treated to a gastronomic delight at the food expo. Several renowned Filipino restaurants and organizations, including Gretsky’s Restaurant, Simon Restaurant and Café Grill, Salad Master Health Technology Trading, and Kulinarya Qatar, participated, offering visitors a delectable taste of Filipino cuisine. What made this experience even more special was that the Filipino youth were actively involved in preparing and serving these delightful dishes, making the evening not only culturally enriching but also a gastronomic feast. Best of all, the food was graciously provided free of charge, fostering a sense of community and camaraderie.
The climax of the evening was a mesmerizing cultural presentation, a harmonious fusion of talent and tradition. Various Filipino community organizations, including PISQ, Banyuhay Dance Group, and Tanghalang Overseas Pinoy, came together to put on a captivating show that transported the audience to the heart of the Philippines. The QNL’s special events area was brimming with spectators from diverse communities, all united in their appreciation for the Philippines’ vibrant cultural heritage.
In conclusion, the Filipino Cultural event held at Qatar National Library on September 15, 2023, was a resounding success, celebrating the Philippines’ rich culture, art, and cuisine. It served as a testament to the strong bonds between the Filipino community and the State of Qatar. Events like these not only bridge cultural gaps but also promote cross-cultural understanding, fostering unity and harmony in the global community. As an OFW, I take pride in such initiatives that bring the essence of our culture to new places and connect people from different backgrounds. Together, we build bridges of friendship and understanding that enrich our lives and communities.