San Francisco, 09 October 2018 – The Philippine Consulate General in San Francisco (PCGSF) signed a partnership agreement with GMA International on 05 October 2018 at the Kalayaan Hall of the Philippine Center in San Francisco. The partnership agreement was signed in support of the Spark*Connect*Empower (SCE), a movement which hopes to spark love and pride in the Filipino culture and heritage.
The agreement was signed by Consul General Henry S. Bensurto, Jr. on behalf of the Philippine Consulate General, and Mr. Joseph Francia, GMA International First Vice President and Head of Operations. Also present during the signing ceremony were Mr. Josh Andowitt, Affiliate Development and Marketing Manager of GMA International, and GMA artists Mr. Christian Bautista, Ms. Julie Anne San Jose and Ms. Mika Gorospe. The officers and staff of the Philippine Consulate General were present along with members of the media, and officials and members of various Filipino community organizations.
Speaking at the signing ceremony, Consul General Henry S. Bensurto, Jr. welcomed the SCE partnership signing with GMA International as a proof of the high level of trust between the Philippine Government, through the PCGSF, and the private sector in line with the private, public, and community partnership objective of the SCE movement. He also said that GMA International is an important outlet that provides both news and information as well as entertainment to Filipinos all over the world. Through the partnership, the Consul general further mentioned, “GMA international reaffirms its commitment to the Global Filipino community, not only to inform and entertain, but also to spark love and passion for country among Filipinos world-wide”.
Consul General Bensurto added that the SCE movement, which is non-political and non-partisan, hopes to bring together various Filipino-American community organizations, including the media, in providing a unifying platform that ensures a much greater impact of these organizations’ activities and programs taken as a collective whole instead of separate entities. He also said that the SCE movement also hopes to create a powerful synergy through the efforts of our Filipino communities worldwide.
In his response, GMA First Vice President and Head of Operations Joseph Francia said that the signing of the agreement reflects the spirit of genuine strategic partnership between the parties as the Bay Area is the gateway of the media network to the whole of the United States. Forward looking, Mr. Francia stressed that, in implementing this agreement, GMA International shall be in close coordination with the SCE movement through the Consulate to create more concrete programs and projects for the success of the partnership and the movement.
The signing ceremony between PCGSF and GMA International also coincided with the signing of the SCE partnership with the Filipino Band Musicians Hall of Fame Foundation (FILHOFF), a California-based non-profit corporation composed of distinguished and competent individuals whose musical, professional, life and business experiences form a solid foundation for the success of the enterprise.
GMA’s brightest stars, Mr. Christian Bautista, Asia’s Romantic Balladeer, Ms. Julie Ann San Jose, Asia’s Pop Sweetheart, and Ms. Mika Gorospe, Bay Area Filipino-American Top 12 finalist in GMA’s The Clash, serenaded the audience after the signing ceremony.