MANILA, Philippines - Welcome to #BalikBayan!
Rappler brings you this new initiative at a very exciting time for Filipinos worldwide.
#BalikBayan was created out of the idea that identity, belonging, and a sense of home are not confined by any country's national borders. Yet we recognize how important it is to look back to our roots to give us a clearer picture of where we are headed in the future.
#BalikBayan is a project that will attempt to harness and engage Filipinos all over the world in collectively rediscovering and redefining Filipino identity.
#BalikBayan is three words in one: "balik" to return; "bayan" nation.
Combine these two, and you form the third: "balikbayan" which has two meanings:
noun: someone who returns home
verb: the act of returning home
#BalikBayan means finding home in finding yourself. It’s about the journey to self discovery.
But what is home? The answer would not be the same for any two people.
In food, language, tradition and through stories, Filipinos continue to strive to preserve the identity and culture of their mother country, but have also adapted to changes that come with the new places they call home.
The Filipino has changed the world in more ways than we can begin to imagine—from Silicon Valley trailblazer Dado Banatao to the Davao-born Jasmine Lee, who became the first naturalized South Korean in history to take a seat in parliament. Countless other Filipinos, in the Philippines and abroad, have forged ahead and made their mark.
The Filipino doesn't just belong to the Philippines anymore but to the world. Let's go home, mag-balikbayan na tayo.