Cedar Points Birthday Club’s Paluwagan Galore

ONE of the perks of being a memver of the Cedar Point’s Birthday Club in Mays Landing, New Jersey, USA is enjoying their ‘Paluwagan Galore’ activity where birthday celebrants will receive $1000. For the month of February, Alma Ramos, Monette Austria Alega and Rachel Lagman-Lipana received their share on their simple yet sweet birthday gathering.  
One thousand dollars for each of the February birthday celebrants: Alma Ramos, Monette Austria Alega, and Rachel Lagman- Lipana! This amount will definitely go a long way… as a birthday present for oneself and as gift to loved ones in the Philippines. (contributed by Mebel Beltran-Dispo)
  Among those who attended their celebration on February 25 were Julie Chiao, Zaide Belarde, Marlyn Cuerquis, Irine Dato, Vilma Yu, Evelyn Villahermosa, Grace Cayme, Sandra Lim, Lorna Yasay, Ingrid Luyon; Donna Guntayon, Rosalie Alcalde, Marjevi Juan, Anne Salvatierra, Vicky Roque, Yvonne Manalo, Rachel Lipana, Carol Ibale, Cheryl Potter, and Mebel Dispo.  
The members of the club who attended the party on Feb 25, 2017 are (not in particular order): Julie Chiao, Zaide Belarde, Alma Ramos, Monette Alega, Marlyn Cuerquis, Irene Dato, Vilma Yu, Evelyn Villahermosa, Grace Cayme, Sandra Lim, Lorna Yasay, Ingrid Luyon, Donna Guntayon, Rosalie Alcalde, Marjevi Juan, Anne Salvatierra, Vicky Roque, Yvonne Manalo, Rachel Lipana, Carol Ibale, Cheryl Potter, and Mebel Dispo. (contributed by Mebel Beltran-Dispo)
  These beauties are Fil-Am health professionals working in the states of New York and New Jersey building a strong Filipino community in the southern part of New Jersey. (Mebel Beltran-Dispo with SunStar Philippines)

Japan opens Ninja academy to woo tourism

JAPAN. Members of Iga ninja group Ashura demonstrate a ninja-inspired martial-art during a press conference by the Japan Ninja Council at Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Japan in Tokyo, Wednesday, Feb. 22, 2017. (AP)

TOKYO — Japan is turning to those hooded samurai-era acrobatic spies known as ninja to woo tourism.

The Japan Ninja Council, a government-backed organization of scholars, tourism groups and businesses, said Wednesday that it’s starting a Ninja Academy to train people in the art of ninja, and building a new museum in Tokyo devoted to ninja, set to open in 2018.MORE

Philippines, Israel to expand exchange program on agri sector

THE Philippines will be sending over 500 college students annually to Israel in order to learn from Tel Aviv’s expertise and advanced technologies in agriculture, the Department of Finance (DOF) said Wednesday.

The deployment of 550 college students chosen from 29 agricultural schools outside Metro Manila is part of the proposal to expand the current exchange program of the two countries in the agriculture sector.MORE

BOC, PDEA tie up with Fujian anti-narcotics agency vs drug smuggling

TWO Philippine agencies have tied up with China’s Fujian Provincial Drug Law Enforcement Agency to stop drug smuggling into the country, the Bureau of Customs (BOC) said Wednesday.

Officials of the BOC and the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) met with the representatives of the Fujian Provincial Drug Law Enforcement Agency on Tuesday.MORE

Palace approves retroactive P1,000 SSS pension hike

Memorandum from the executive secretary.

MALACAÑANG signed Wednesday, February 22, a memorandum giving a green light for the release of the P1,000 increase in the monthly pension of Social Security System (SSS) members.

Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea, who signed the memorandum, informed SSS Chairperson Amado Valdez and SSS President Emmanuel Dooc that the Malacañang approved the proposed increase in the benefit of qualified SSS pensioners and beneficiaries, retroactive from January this year.MORE

Pope demands protection for migrants

ROME. Pope Francis delivers his speech during his visit at the Roma Tre University in Rome, Friday, Feb. 17, 2017. Pope Francis says the phenomenon of migration doesn’t pose a danger to Europe’s culture but rather a challenge for societies to grow. (AP)

Pope Francis is calling for humanitarian corridors to protect refugees fleeing their homelands and denouncing the “populist rhetoric” that is closing doors in their faces.

In a speech Tuesday to an international forum on migration and peace, Francis also demanded justice and redress for migrants and the poor who have been exploited by the wealthy. He said the world can no longer sustain “unacceptable economic inequality” that destroys the planet and forces people to leave their homes.MORE

Tell it to Sun.Star: It’s not ‘just’ sex

THE Movie and Television Review and Classification Board (MTRCB) recently summoned the producers and directors of the hit TV show “Til I Met You” for words and portrayals they deemed unfit for TV. At the center of the issue was the line from the October 26 episode casually stating, “sex lang ‘yan.” However you put it, this line is a mockery of what sex is and what it is made for.

Bello: Protect and promote rights of migrant workers

THE Department of Labor and Employment Secretary Silvestre Bello III encouraged his fellow labor ministers in Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) to create measures or initiatives that will protect and promote the rights of migrant workers.

During the opening of the Asean Labor Ministers’ Retreat on Monday, February 20, Bello acknowledged the importance of Asean migrant workers for the better relationship of the Asean countries. It is therefore important, according to him, that they implement meaningful instruments for the workers.MORE

Bo’s Coffee to cap 1st quarter with 100 branches

Brew of choice. A barista shows guests where Bo’s Coffee beans are sourced. (SunStar Foto/Allan Cuizon)

HOMEGROWN coffee chain Bo’s Coffee has unveiled plans to open nine more outlets to close the first quarter of this year with 100 branches across the country.

The coffee chain founded by Cebuano Steve Benitez soft-opened its 91st branch in the Philippines and 31st outlet in Cebu at Island Central Mall in Lapu-Lapu City yesterday.MORE

500 families get bags of blessing

Gift-giving. A resident receives a bag of goods from Metrobank Foundation’s Bags of Blessing during the distribution held in Mambaling Sports Complex in Cebu City. (Contributed Foto)

AT least 500 Listahanan identified-poor families in Cebu City received the Metrobank Foundation’s Bags of Blessing during the Chinese New Year celebration last month.

The Bags of Blessing project is a nationwide gift-giving program of the foundation where 10,000 bags filled with grocery items worth P1,000 was distributed to 10,000 poorest families listed in the Department of Social Welfare and Development’s (DSWD) Listahanan but are not beneficiaries of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program.MORE

Communist Party of China donates $400,000 to build school

DAVAO. Students of Bolton Elementary School wave both the Philippine and Chinese flag as they welcome the Chinese dignitaries Tuesday, Feb. 21, headed by H.E Song Tao Minister of the International Department of Communist Party of China, at Bolton Elementary School gymnasium. The dignitaries donated $400,000 to the school to construct facilities and another $200,000 to build water facilities in rural areas in Davao City. (Macky Lim)

THE Communist Party of China (CPC), through the China Foundation of Development, donated USD400,000 for the construction of Bolton Elementary School, Davao City.

International Department Minister of CPC, Song Tao during his speech before the 18th City Council Tuesday, February 21, said they came to the Philippines in behalf of the CPC of China to foster friendship and partnership in Davao and in Philippines.MORE

FinanceAsia picks BSP Gov. Tetangco

BSP Governor Amando M. Tetangco Jr. was conferred the 2016 Outstanding Achievement Award by FinanceAsia, a Hong Kong-based publication that covers investment banking, capital markets, and strategic corporate finance in Asia Pacific.

FinanceAsia annually recognizes the region’s most significant transactions, the financial institutions that advised on them ,as well as outstanding individuals in the field of finance.MORE

PAL, Cebu Pacific announces flight cancellations

THE Philippine Airlines and Cebu Pacific have announced the cancellation of flights due to the maintenance shutdown of the Tagaytay radar from March 6 to March 11.

The Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) issued a notice to airmen enforcing a temporary shutdown of the Tagaytay radar for maintenance and upgrade.MORE

A man for others

CAGAYAN DE ORO. Gimar Reyes with the head of the Student Activities and Leadership Development at Xavier University-Ateneo de Cagayan, Richel Petalcurin (left) and his mother Mariza Reyes during the TOSP National Awarding (right) (Contributed photo)

AT AGE twenty, Gimar Alingig Reyes embodies selflessness in his pursuit to serve others through teaching. Even at a young age, Reyes has already reached out to others to fulfill his advocacy of providing education especially to the underprivileged in the country.

A graduate of Bachelor of Elementary Education at Xavier University-Ateneo de Cagayan, Reyes already has a passionate thirst for teaching.MORE