Filipino-Australians are following the footsteps of their Canadian counterparts in holding the annual Community Builders Awards in Sydney early this year.

Adhika, Inc, a non-profit association for Filipino-Australian press members, is holding a fundraising gala in March, which will also celebrate the achievements of the community's achievers and volunteers, while marking the 70th year of the Philippine-Australia Diplomatic Relations.

Adhika, which turns five this year, launched the Community Builders Awards, an awards program that will recognise those who have inspired positive change within the Filipino-Australian community through outstanding work in their line of expertise.

The award categories include arts, economic development, healthcare, education, sports and recreation and environment.

There will also be a Young Leaders Awards, Hall of Fame and a Legacy Award given on the night.

"We are proud to host the Community Builders Recognition Gala to acknowledge these incredible community builders. We believe they are the essence and the role models from which young generations of Filipino-Australians can learn from," said Josie Musa, lead co-ordinator of Adhika.

Musa said that the Community Builders program consists of a call for nominations and judging process, an Awards Gala Dinner to be held on March 13, 2016 at Lidcombe Dooleys Club (see flyer), a special magazine-format souvenir program, a year-round website and video/TV broadcast of the gala.

She said that the Awards, while only introduced this year, is modelled after a long-running and successful Awards program by the same name in Canada.

This year is also the 70th year in Philippine-Australian Diplomatic Relations so the association also decided that it would celebrate the milestone at the same time as the awards.

"As members of the media, we appreciate the vital role that the Philippine Consulate in Australia plays in the dissemination of information between our adopted country and our home country - this year's gala is our small way of giving thanks," said Musa.

Award nominations can be submitted in confidence no later than February 1. The Nomination categories are:

@Arts - The award goes to an individual or group that has helped make the Artistic community stronger. They have championed an individual, an event, an idea, an ethic, or philosophy. 

@Economic Development - The award goes to an individual or group that has had an important impact on the economic well-being of thecommunity. They have chaired and led a committee, they have helped bring new business to town, or they are responsible for putting infrastructure in place. 

@Education - This award goes to a student, educator, administrator, or education advocate (i.e. parent) who has made a difference in the Fil-Oz community. It could be an extraordinary teacher who has changed the direction of students’ lives, an administrator who established a specialised program, or an advocate who saved a school from closing. 

@Environment - This award recognises a person or group that has had an important positive impact on our environment, both man-made and natural. It may be a private initiative (i.e. an innovative energy efficient home) or a public one (i.e. the re-greening or the cleaning up of a river/canal/creek/coast/park/bush area). What all projects will have in common is that they demonstrate to the rest of us what is possible in improving our environmental footprint in our community

@Health Care - The award goes to an individual or group that has had an important impact on the health care of our community. It could be as straight forward as a health care professional who has gone beyond the call of duty, or the individual who helped establish a palliative care program that wouldn’t exist without his or her leadership or an organ donor.

@Sports & Recreation - The award goes to the individual or group that have contributed to the strength of sport in the Fil-Oz community. They have inspired people (a coach), established a program (a league or playground), mentored a team or an individual to extraordinary accomplishment, or set an example for many to carry in their hearts. 

@Young Leader - The award goes to an individual or group under 35 years of age, actively involved in worthwhile community service, in any one of the @Community Builders categories. Recipients are leaders who show a commitment to make their community better for others. *one year minimum in the community is required for this category. Posthumous awards can also be considered in these categories.

@Hall Of Fame Big ideas. An individual or a group that has had a significant impact on the community. People who can be credited with the establishment of an institution (a theatre centre, a festival, a park, a science centre, a re-greening project). 

@Legacy Award The Legacy Award is awarded posthumously to an individual who has created lasting change and measureable difference in our community through commitment and perseverance. This award pays tribute to an individual’s professional, social or cultural leadership, and vision, and his or her ongoing legacy.  


This gala event will honour individuals and organizations in eight community categories namely:

• Arts - Artists/Singers/Entertainers/WebDesigners & Photographers, Writers/Authors, etc.

• Economic Development –Businesses/Tradesmen/Engineers/ Solicitors/Migration Agents, etc.

• Education – Fil-Oz in Academe, Universities/Schools, Consultants, Teachers & Researchers, etc.

• Environment – Garden Enthusiasts/CleanUp/Bushcare/OceanCare volunteers, etc.

• Health Care – Doctors/Dentists/Surgeon/Parasitologists/ Optometrists/Podiatrist/Clinical Psychologists/Organ Donors, etc.

• Sports & Recreation - Boxers/Basketball /Golf/Taekwando/Hiphop/Ballroom Dancers, etc

• Young Leader – Scholars (former Int. Students) Youth Groups Leaders (church/community/sports based), etc. FILCAA/PCC/Multicultural Awardees

• Hall of Fame – Fil-Oz-OAMs/OA/Ambassadors/Federal/State/Council/Regional Awards Recipients


For more information, contact Musa on / or by phone on 0404 631 438.


Photo credit: Radio Rizal/Facebook

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