Technical Working Committee

IN OBSERVANCE of the 80th Araw ng Kagitingan (Day of Valor) and the 2022 Philippine Veterans Week, the Philippine Veterans Affairs Office (PVAO) and the Department of National Defense (DND) encourages everyone to participate in the series of commemorative activities on April 5 to 11, 2022 to remember and honor the gallantry and sacrifices of our Filipino War Veterans.

This year’s celebration is anchored on the theme, “Kagitingan ng mga Beterano, Inspirasyon ng Nagkakaisang Pilipino.” The activities for the Philippine Veterans Week intends to elicit participation from various sectors, especially the youth, to reignite nationalism and cultivate unity among Filipinos through meaningful commemorative events and educational activities.

In accordance with Proclamation No. 466, s. 1989, the country celebrates the Philippine Veterans Week from April 5 to 11 of every year to promote, preserve, and memorialize the principles, ideas, and deeds of our war veterans as a means to enhance patriotism and love of country, especially among the youth of the land. Meanwhile, April 9 of every year is designated by Executive Order No. 203, s. 1987 as Araw ng Kagitingan.

With the easing up of COVID-19 restrictions, the Technical Working Committee for the National Observance of the Philippine Veterans Week and 80th Araw ng Kagitingan will conduct commemorative activities that is open to a limited number of people to ensure the safety of the participants under the Alert Level 1 guidelines of the IATF. The following are the events prepared by the committee in coordination with various government agencies and institutions:

 

PRE-VETERANS WEEK ACTIVITIES

 

Kagitingan: The PVAO Historical Webinar Lectures

March 1, 9, 18, 31, April 21 and May 5, 2022 via Zoom

          The series of webinar lectures aims to educate and enrich the knowledge of the Filipino Youth on Philippine Military History and to rekindle the love for country amongst the youth.

 

Book Launch: “Medal of Valor” and “Identity and Independence: Filipino Women in Times of War and Peace”

March 29, 2022 (1PM), Palma Hall, University of the Philippines Diliman

 

Virtual Book Launch: “Guerilla Days in the Philippine South”

April 27, 2022 via Zoom and Facebook Live

          Two separate book launches will be held in line with the national observance. The first book launching will be a face-to-face event at the Palma Hall, University of the Philippines Diliman which will also be held via Zoom and live streamed on PVAO’s Official Facebook Page. The “Medal of Valor” was written by Dr. Rowena Quinto Bailon while “Identity and Independence” was edited by Dr. Maria Bernadette L. Abrera and Dr. Neil Martial R. Santillan. The second book launch will be held via Zoom to promote the book, “Guerilla Days in the Philippine South” written by Dr. Cesar Pobre.

 

          The books, published in partnership with PVAO, aim to instill patriotism in our people by telling the stories of our unsung heroes’ gallantry and selfless sacrifices for the sake of freedom.

 

U.S. Congressional Gold Medal Awarding

April 1, 2022 (1:30 PM), Dimalupig Hall A, AFPCOC, Camp Aguinaldo, Quezon City

          The awarding of the U.S. Congressional Gold Medal (CGM), to Filipino World War II Veterans continues as twenty-three (23) Filipino veterans will be awarded by the Philippine Veterans Affairs Office (PVAO), together with the United States Embassy. This year’s awarding will mark the resumption of the conferment of the U.S. CGM to WWII veteran awardees after two years of hiatus due to Covid-19. The U.S. CGM is the highest civilian award given by the U.S. Congress to an individual or a group for outstanding service to the United States.

 

VETERANS WEEK PROPER EVENTS

 

Sunrise Ceremony

April 5, 2022 (7am), Libingan ng mga Bayani, Taguig City

          The ceremony will commence the Philippine Veterans Week and provides individual veterans the opportunity to honor their fallen heroes and comrades through the offering of flowers at the tomb of the Unknown Soldier. The Commanding General of the Philippine Army traditionally leads this ceremony.

 

Wreath-Laying Ceremony

April 5, 2022 (8am), Libingan ng mga Bayani, Taguig City

          The Ceremony is an institutional way of venerating the memory of Filipino patriots and martyrs who laid down their lives for their motherland.

 

Tribute to All Filipino Heroes

April 7, 2022 (9am), Filipino Heroes Memorial Corregidor Island, Cavite (Virtual Ceremony)

          A simple wreath-laying ceremony will be held at the Corregidor Island and will be presented through Facebook live at the Official PVAO Facebook Page. The ceremony honors all Filipino heroes, patriots and defenders who fought and died for the country’s freedom and liberty.

 

Araw ng Kagitingan

April 9, 2022 (9am), Mt. Samat National Shrine, Pilar, Bataan

          Araw ng Kagitingan is the highlight among all the commemorative events during the Philippine Veterans Week. Being a national observance, the President of the Republic of the Philippines traditionally leads the commemoration while the National Historical Commission is in charge of the program. Various regional and provincial government units will also simultaneously replicate the ceremony.

 

Paggunita sa Capas

April 10, 2022 (9am), Capas National Shrine, Tarlac

          The ceremony solemnly remembers the veterans who suffered during the Death March and those who were incarcerated at the Camp O’ Donnel Concentration Camp. The event aims to remind us of the hardships and struggles endured by our gallant veterans during those dark times, and bring inspiration to the youth.

 

Sunset Ceremony

April 11, 2022 (5pm), Libingan ng mga Bayani, Taguig City

          The ceremony marks the end of the Philippine Veterans Week. Veterans, their widows, and the children and grandchildren of the veterans gather before the tomb of the Unknown Soldier to reflect on how the life of a veteran in their families touched their lives. The ceremony concludes with a Pledge of Patriotism, followed by the lighting of candles at the Flame of Freedom by the participants and signing their names in the Wall of Patriotism.

          Aside from the official commemorative events mentioned above, the Department of Education (DepEd) through the External Partnerships Service, in cooperation with the National Historical Commission of the Philippines (NHCP), DND and PVAO, will also conduct a Virtual Symposium on April 8, 2022 from 2pm to 6:20pm to be hosted by DepEd Schools Division Offices of Balanga and Bataan.

          A poster-making contest, an oratorical contest, an essay writing contest, and a song-writing contest, facilitated by DepEd, will also be held as part of the celebration. The objectives of the activities for the students are to further deepen their knowledge on the historical significance of this celebration and to raise their awareness on the values of nationalism, patriotism and love of country.

          The Mt. Samat Memorial Cross in Mt. Samat, Pilar, Bataan will also be lighted once again on April 9, following the celebration of Araw ng Kagitingan. The Salute of Lights not only honors the gallantry and bravery of our fallen forefathers, but will also symbolize the call for unity and solidarity among the Filipino people in these trying times. The light show is spearheaded by the TIEZA – Mt. Samat Flagship Tourism Enterprise Zone (FTEZ), in coordination with the Philippine Veterans Affairs Office (PVAO).

          The Araw ng Kagitingan and the Philippine Veterans Week is a meaningful celebration not just to uphold tradition but to deepen our appreciation of the freedom and independence we enjoy today. As we observe this year’s Philippine Veterans Week, we also recognize the selfless sacrifice of our beloved Filipino veterans. The whole 80th Araw ng Kagitingan and 2022 Philippine Veterans Week Technical Working Committee hopes that the activities of this year’s national observance will strengthen our commitment to nation-building by fulfilling our duties as freedom-loving Filipinos.

          Interested attendees and participants may contact PVAO for more details and inquiries about the events through the following contact details:

          Telephone: 8912 4526 – Office of the Administrator

                               8912 4728 – Public Affairs Office

                               8911 4296 – Veterans Memorial and Historical Division

          Email Addresses: pvao.publicaffairs@pvao.gov.ph and pvao.publicaffairs@gmail.com

          Website: pvao.gov.ph