Legarda Honored for Contributions to Indigenous Peoples’ Lives

November 25, 2016

Senator Loren Legarda has received the “Gawad Katutubong Pagkalinga” award from the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA) for her invaluable service to the country’s indigenous peoples and relentless efforts in preserving and promoting its traditional culture during the celebration of Dayaw: Philippine International Indigenous Peoples Festival 2016 at the Quezon City Memorial Circle.


“I am thankful to the NCCA for recognizing my work and contributions in advancing the welfare of indigenous cultural communities in the Philippines. It leaves me grateful and humbled; but more importantly, tremendously inspired to live up to the noble principles this award represents,” Legarda said.


“Filipinos must recognize the important contributions of indigenous peoples and indigenous cultural communities in the overall development of the country considering their rich culture and traditions that allowed them to thwart colonization and influence of other countries,” she added.


The Senator also commended the best students of the National Living Treasures or Manlilikha ng Bayan who were also recognized. She stressed that they are very fortunate to have been mentored by no less than the masters of indigenous artistry.


“The role of the Manlilikha ng Bayan students is important in preserving and propagating the wealth of Filipino traditional knowledge and artistry,” said Legarda.


She also thanked the NCCA for bringing culture and traditions closer to many Filipinos by organizing the annual Dayaw Festival.


“This is a very important event because it gives ordinary people a glimpse on the lives of Filipino IPs. It serves as a reminder that regardless of ethnicity, we are one people,” she said.


Legarda has long been an advocate of cultural preservation. She has supported Schools of Living Traditions (SLT) as well as the documentation of indigenous knowledge and traditional practices, and organized regional assemblies and the first national indigenous cultural summit that served as avenues for dialogues between the IPs and the various sectors of society.


The Senator also conceptualized the Dayaw television series on indigenous culture which she hosts and is produced by the NCCA and the ABS-CBN News Channel (ANC).


She has been engaged in efforts to revive the age-old tradition of weaving, creating the country’s first permanent textile gallery, Hibla ng Lahing Filipino at the National Museum; leading the launch of the Hibla Pavilion of Textiles and Weaves of the Philippines, which displayed different weaving traditions; and supporting the National Museum’sLecture Series on Philippine Traditional Textiles and Indigenous Knowledge. Senator Legarda also initiated the creation of the Museum’s Baybayin Gallery and Manlilikha ng Bayan Gallery.