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CheckBox   Item   Price   Quantity 
   Donation with Dinner  $100.00
   Dinner  $35.00

Makabayan Georgia, Inc. in the next decade… Sharing is Caring!

The first and premier Filipino American organization in Georgia is the Filipino-American Association of Greater Atlanta. Established in 1974, Fil-Am did not only banded together the Filipino-Americans in Georgia, it also preserved the Philippine heritage and culture in our youth and promoted it to the rest of Georgia. Through the years, as the number of Filipino-Georgians increased and the needs and wants of the community changed, a great number of quality community leaders stepped up to meet the new challenges by establishing new groups or organizations, according to geographical social groups, professional groups, business and church groups. The Philippine American Chamber of Commerce of Georgia was established in 1995 and is one of the direct offshoot from and which complimented the first Fil-Am Association of Greater Atlanta.

Having achieved the American dream, most Filipino-Americans find themselves compelled to share this new found blessings to make a difference in the lives of Filipinos in the Philippines and in their own local communities.

Thus Makabayan Georgia, Inc. was established in 2008 to empower these Filipino Georgians and friends of the Philippines in Georgia, to do just that. All former Fil-Am presidents and some PACCGA past presidents, the Makabayan directors, , consolidated their funds and minds to establish a Filipino-American 501 (C)(3) organization based in Georgia, to empower Filipino Georgians and friends, to make a difference in their communities, in the Philippines, and elsewhere in the world. All contributions to MGI are tax deductible under section 170 of the Internal Revenue Code as a Public Charity entity with 501 (C) (3) tax exempt status.

First to benefit from Makabayan Georgia was Fil-Am in June 2008, when it hosted the 2nd June 12 Kalayaan celebrations, with Willy Blanco as president. That set the precedent for Makabayan Georgia be the fiscal agent of the June 12 Kalayaan celebrations to present. The June 12 Kalayaan celebrations is a joint project of the office of the Philippine Honorary Consul General of Atlanta and the various Filipino American organizations in Georgia and nearby states to provide a venue and a platform for all Filipino Americans in Georgia and nearby states, celebrate and declare our Philippine heritage, as one Filipino community. This annual celebration is joined by as many as 21 different Filipino American organizations and churches.

The Filipino-American Association of Greater Atlanta continues to benefit from Makabayan Georgia through the years, receiving small grant moneys in conjunction with Makabayan’s scholarship program and civic engagement program (voter registration drive) and other projects, totaling $4,700.00 to date.

Because of its geographical location and make up, dozens of tropical storms hit the Philippines on a yearly basis. Whenever the government declares national disaster as a result of a tropical storm, Makabayan sends a minimum of $500 to the affected areas through a local contact or NGO. First of these disaster relief donations was to Cagayan de Oro when Sendong hit the area. Makabayan, then CEO Willee Bonus, taking time off his vacation time in the Philippines, went to affected areas and distributed rice to hundreds of families worth, $1,000. Makabayan later decided in later cases to send help through the “Sagip Kapamilya” project of ABS-CBN, which has totaled to $1,500 thus far.

Makabayn Georgia first came to the limelight when it rose to the occasion in the aftermath of super typhoon Haiyan and collected about $75,000 to help the victims. The highlight of the fundraising effort was the dinner fundraiser in Happy Valley Restaurant, where the restaurant provided free dinners to more than 400 donors and raised $25,000 in one night. The collected Haiyan funds were disbursed as follows;

·         Rehabilitation of Bethany Hospital in Tacloban

·         Rice distribution to thousands of typhoon victims in Tacloban

·         Funded freight costs for over a million dollars worth of medical supplies and equipment of Yonkofa project, through the De Guzman Ramos group.

·         Provided livelihood to 20 families through the “Sikad”, tricycle project

·         Provided seed money to a number of families through the “Sari-Sari Store” livelihood project

·         Two water filtration systems to provide clean drinking water to an elementary school and a residential village benefitting more than a thousand families

Makabayan Georgia, Inc. also partnered with Caring for Others, Inc.,, who donated 27,000 pairs of shoes as part of their No Bare Soles project. These Skechers shoes were distributed as follows;

·         Clarkston International Bible Church, benefitting several hundreds of refugees in the Clarkston area.

·         Jesus the Redeemer Church GA (JRTCGA), Acworth, GA

·         Vietnamese American Community of Georgia

·         Thai Association-World Center USA

·         Palawan Project of Emory Rotary through Pia Valeriano

·         Quezon, Philippine project through Galing Foundation

·         Cotabato Project through Galing Foundation

·         Tacloban Project through Makabayan GA (Eleanor Pascual)

·         Zamboanga Project through Makabayan GA (Didi O’Connor)

·         Olongapo Project through Bonus Foundation

·         Greece Project through Harry Norman Realtors


Makabayan Georgia has given small grants to the following;

·         Filipino Student Association (FSA) - $1,000

·         Philippine American Women’s Association of Georgi (PAWAG) - $1,500

·         Bohol Restoration Project - $1,000

·         Caring for Others - $2,500

Makabayan Georgia unceremoniously celebrated a milestone in 2018 (10 year anniversary of Makabayan GA, Inc.) with the largest June 12 celebration thus far, with more than 400 attendees at the infamous GA Aquarium banquet hall.

Going into the next decade of its operation, Makabayan Georgia Inc. is launching the “SHARING IS CARING” Grant Awards Project, to benefit up to 10 grant recipients, to eligible Filipino-American groups or organizations in Georgia with approved projects reflecting the goals and ideals of Makabayan Georgia, Inc. This project is slated to be an annual project, in line with its mission statement of “empowering Filipino Americans and friends of the Philippines to make a difference in the lives of Filipinos in the Philippines and in their own communities”, Makabayan Georgia brings together the donors and the doers in making such difference.

A single $100 donation can easily multiply to thousands of dollars when we consolidate dozens or hundreds of donors. Makabayan Georgia, Inc. is sending an appeal to all Filipino Americans and friends of the Philippines, in Georgia to join us empower both yourselves and the various Filipino American organizations in Georgia to make a difference in your local communities and/or in the Philippines. There are a lot of worthwhile projects waiting to be implemented by various organizations, only to be hindered by lack of funding.

Please visit our website to apply or donate;

Download the 2019 SHARING IS CARING Grant Awards Application PDF file

2019 Kalayaan (“Freedom”) Celebration: Filipinos Unite through Food to Celebrate the Philippine Independence Day

In June of each year, since 2007, the Filipino-American (FilAm) community in Metro-Atlanta, come together to commemorate the Philippine Independence Day through the Kalayaan Celebration with the Kalayaan Gala taking place on the actual Philippine Independence day – June 12.  Philippine Honorary Consul General Raoul “Ray” Donato, Makabayan Georgia Inc. and the Kalayaan Committee member-volunteers lead efforts to host the Kalayaan Celebration for a growing community of FilAms in Metro-Atlanta.

In 2012, the Kalayaan Family Fun Day, typically held on a Saturday at a park, was added as part of the Kalayaan Celebration to enable FilAms, their families and friends to join outdoor activities involving sports, children’s games, singing and poetry contests, food and Philippine-made items sold by various vendors and many more.  

On June 12, 2019, FilAms once again held the Kalayaan Gala, with venue at the Fairmont in West Midtown, using the much-loved dessert “halo halo” (or literally mix mix) as the icon for this year’s Kalayaan Celebration with the theme:  “Halo Halo: A Celebration of the History & Culinary Journey of the Filipino.”

Among the highlights of the Kalayaan Gala:

·         Keynote Speaker, Amy Besa, Author of “Memories of Philippine Kitchens – Stories and Recipes from Far and Near” and Co-Owner (along with husband, Chef Romy Dorotan) of Purple Yam Restaurant in Brooklyn, NY, spoke on “Flavors of the Philippine Kitchen.”


·         Individual Consular Awardee Anita Smith was recognized for her work as Founder of Damayan FilAm Association of Middle Georgia leading several community projects in the Philippines and in GA.


·         Group Consular Awardee Philippine Nurses Association of Georgia (PNAGA) was recognized for their volunteer work holding free health clinics and free health fairs through the years.


·         Silent Auction of Philippine Indigenous (Lumad) Dolls by the Galing Foundation to benefit Philippine indigenous communities.


·         Poster display of Philippine dishes by participating FilAm organizations, with Northwest Phil-Am Association of GA winning the “Most Creative” poster, selected by Chef Romy Dorotan, displaying “tupig” an Ilocano dessert made from rice.


Here is a Message of Thanks from Anne Marie Logarta, 2019 Kalayaan Committee Chairperson:

Dear Kalayaan Committee Members, Participating Filipino-American Organizations, Sponsors, Donors, Friends of Kalayaan, Friends and Kababayans (“Countrymen”),

I am profoundly grateful for your volunteerism in hosting a close to 480 person Kalayaan Gala on June 12, 2019. I am also profoundly grateful to our sponsors, donors and Friends of Kalayaan for your financial and in-kind support.

Wow, and yes, what a night it was.  People were abuzz with excitement and it was wonderful to see you in your Philippine attire or national dress, worn by many that evening.  You all looked glamorous and dapper – and I was so proud to wear Filipiniana, just like many of you.

You all worked very diligently these past few months, and the pull to the finish line wasn’t easy.  It was tiring, exhausting, consuming and we were worn out and tired. Many of you did not eat on time nor sleep much, you were literally “burning the midnight oil”, especially the last few days before and during the Gala. Many worked under-time or took days off from work. I must commend you for your hard work, dedication and efforts.

We hosted the Gala with all the necessary elements of the Pinoy village: the bahay kubo, poster display of Philippine cuisine, fresh flowers, floral centerpieces, flags, silent auction of indigenous or lumad dolls, souvenir program with banig (“woven”) border, menu cards with banig border, a taste of Filipino food, with a real halo halo as dessert, halo halo poster, halo halo projection at the main dining hall, Mabuhay or welcome poster, sponsors’ backdrop, music, Filipino band: Jammrs, soloists, dancers, awardees and others who were part of the program, and the presence of FilAm participating Organizations, sponsors, donors, Friends of Kalayaan, friends and Kababayans.

Yes, there are many learnings and fine-tuning of processes and to-dos – overall, the Gala was full of excited and happy guests and Kababayans, all wanting to connect or reconnect their friendships and be together.

Our Keynote speaker, Amy Besa and Chef Romy Dorotan were  thrilled to meet us, to meet many in the FilAm community from Metro-Atlanta, and to be part of something special that evening,  Before Amy and Chef Romy departed the Fairmont, they hugged me and shared with me, “Your event tonight was real and authentic.”

And I too felt something very special about that evening, and I am certain that you felt it as well – we were all connected, all one in being so proud to be Filipino.  Proudly, Pinoy ako!

The social media feeds on Facebook and other channels were non-stop day after the Gala and these continued for a couple of days more. We had very excited guests who were documenting the event. I am a social media fanatic myself and was delighted with the response.

Feedback or comments about the Kalayaan Celebration, both for Family Fun Day and the Gala, are most welcome.  Our common goal is a bigger and better Kalayaan Celebration next year and in the future.  Please email:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Maraming, maraming salamat to you Kalayaan Committee members, Chairman Didi O’Connor & the Makabayan Board and Philippine Honorary Consul General Ray Donato. 

Thank you again to our sponsors, donors, Friends of Kalayaan, friends and Kababayans for your support.

Mabuhay kayong lahat and see you at the Kalayaan 2020!


Anne Marie Logarta

Chairperson, 2019 Kalayaan Committee




Celebration Pictures

Official presentation of Governor Nathan Deal's proclamation of June 12, 2016 as Philippine Independence Day in the State of Georgia to the committee members of the Kalayaan 2016 celebrations.

L-R: Wil Bonus, Art Bayani, Mayette Bayani, Pam Peterman , Lilia Hagler, Gov Nathan Deal, Vendy Soriano, Bea Torralba, Didi O'Connor, Pia Valeriano, Randy Cabanog.