Two groups have joined the United Filipino Organization family.
The Alternatibong Kagalingan Angkop sa Pamayanang Pinoy, Inc. or AKAP Pinoy and the Saipan Building & Fixing Computer Users Group or SBFCUG accepted their official certificates of membership during the installation ceremony for UFO's new officers at Fiesta Resort & Spa Saipan on Saturday.
AKAP Pinoy is composed of graduates of culinary courses offered in the past by the Philippine Consulate General, while the SBFCUG was founded in 2006 and incorporated as a nonprofit group in 2011 by graduates of the consulate's computer-related classes.
Marlon Regaton, president of AKAP Pinoy, said in an interview after the event that their UFO membership is a welcome development for the group since the consulate's shutdown last year.
“We are pleased that UFO has reached out to us as they will be taking the lead on events within the Filipino community. Through our membership, we can now collaborate with other member organizations and hopefully enhance our skills. We stand ready to support UFO,” he told Saipan Tribune.
SBFCUG founding chair Mar V. Masilungan said this was the group's third invitation to join the umbrella organization of Filipino associations in the CNMI.
“We finally decided to accept UFO's invitation to show that we are united with other Filipino groups in the CNMI. We hope that our membership would facilitate information dissemination and coordination of events as UFO takes the lead within the Filipino community,” he said in a phone interview.
UFO's latest members bring to 16 the total number of Filipino groups affiliated with the umbrella organization.
UFO president Annamae Adaza acknowledged former UFO officer Paul Madriaga for being instrumental in reaching out to the two groups and expressed hope that other inactive organizations would follow suit.
“We have to combine our forces and at the same time our resources for the benefit of our fellow Filipinos in the Commonwealth. This is the time to work together and serve our kababayans,” said Adaza.
Other UFO members are Bayani Association, Marianas Association of Filipino Engineers and Architects, Visminda, MDX Radio Club, CNMI Power, Marianas Institute of Filipino CPAs and Accountants, Cabalen, Namfrel, Northern Marianas Bartenders Association, Filcom Foundation, Kampil, Triskelion, Mafilwa, and Samahang Ilocano-Pangasinense.