KROKIS Camp: Workshop and Socio-cultural Engagement with Abeling Tribe

At exactly 3 am on the 10th of February, the LAPIS volunteers together with the 5 campers of KROKIS hit the road to Tarlac City.

The word “croquis” is a French term which means to sketch or draw a figure.

KROKIS is a 3-weekend film and songwriting workshop that is divided into three sessions. One of these is the socio-cultural engagement with the Abeling tribe in Pangasaan Lake, where the campers– with their aspiration to make songs that captures the interest of public got the chance to meet and learn the Abeling tribe’s social struggle and history.

On the matter of the Aeta’s never ending battle, the most persistent and urgent question I always ask and I think everybody should ask themselves is: “To whom and what are you doing for others?”

The pressure that has been continuously given by the State to our Aeta people is not unknown to us. One of the struggles that they’re fighting is the increase of militarization in their community and the deliberate red-tagging of their leaders simply because of their active defense against the encroachment of their lands by the big multinational corporations backed up by the government to oppress the mass and exploit their ancestral domain.
Mang Johnny Basilio, vice chieftain of the Abeling tribe said, “Pilit nilang sinasaksak ang kaunlaran na na hindi nakadisenyo sa amin. Ang kaunlaran ng kapatagan ay hindi akma sa lugar namin.

“The katutubo’s struggle today goes beyond their right to self-determination, they want to maintain and preserve their culture and nature. They’re afraid that one day, their children will not have the knowledge of their way of living.

As a volunteer of LAPIS, and together with the campers, we discovered how the usual composing of music that contains vital, powerful and liberating message can be used as a communication tool to recognize and share their story.

Author: Ish Catilogo


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