What is CUFOT? Council of United Filipino Organizations of Tidewater, Inc.
Letter from our late Chairman, Dr. Manuel Hipol
10-2-2013 – MESSAGE OF THE CUFOT CHAIRMAN AND THE PCCVA
Greetings and a Warm Welcome to Everyone!
On behalf of the members of the Board of Directors and the Board of Trustees, I extend my profound gratitude for visiting us in our newly developed website. This was made possible through the guidance of the young and intelligent CEO of Firestarter, Mr. Eric Macalma. He patiently encouraged us to develop our BRAND through the magic of our new website by showcasing the Philippine Cultural Center of VA.
I would like to invite you personally to visit our Philippine Cultural Center which holds much of our Filipino American history/heritage. When you visit you will enjoy our famous southern hospitality under the warm drenched sunkissed Virginia Beach atmosphere. Furthermore this Center is a legacy of Filipino Immigrants including many men & women who served the US military.
The Council of United Filipino Organizations of Tidewater, Inc, was founded in 1976. The primary mission is to preserve and perpetuate our beautiful culture and traditions. Our vision, was to build a Philippine Cultural Center for our youth to plan for their future and climb the ladder of success.
In addition it is a sanctuary for the ever growing senior citizens as they can reminisce our colorful Philippine past while maintaining the dignity and pride of their remaining senior years. This beautiful building is a multi-functional complex designed to serve the needs of our Community. Being an IRS Tax Exempt 501-C organization, the Center is open to everyone regardless of color, creed and religion.
The Philippine Cultural Center of Virginia has 14,000 Sq Ft, with 1,100 seating capacity, on a 3 acre lot prime real estate property in the heart of Virginia Beach, close to Towne Point Center Commercial Area . We borrowed $988,500 Construction Loan from the bank payable in 25 years with 7.5% Interest Rate. This Loan was made possible through the help of the 32 Fil-American military families who willingly became guarantors to the loan. This 32 brave families, coming from the grass roots of our community, of all walks of life, eventually became the Board of Trustees of the Council. To date, as of October 2013, the current loan after the Centers Inauguration on June 24,2000, 13 years ago is now $78,082.15.
The Board of Directors are coming from the different presidents and leaders of the member organizations of the Council . They help sustain the Center through their continuous fund raising activities. I would like to mention one specific organization who had helped continuously sustain the construction loan of the Center. This is the Mrs. Philippines of Virginia and Court Society. They provided the seed money to buy the first parcel of 1.5 acre lot and a small house that served as the first
Philippine Cultural Center in Virginia Beach. Yes, we started in a very humble beginning. The unwavering dedication, faithful leadership and sincere service to the community became the backbone of our success and resiliency of the Councils triumph that continuously felt and respected.
Over the past 17 years as Council Chairman, I am proud to say that we had changed the landscape of Virginia Beach through the presence of the Philippine Cultural Center and had contributed to the Cultural Development, Economic Growth and Political strength of the City. Thus,making Virginia Beach as one among the Top Best 20 Cities to live in America. Virginia is also a military town where Filipino-Americans had served, lived and enjoyed the American Dream.
Once again thank you for visiting us online, as I extend my warmest and most sincere gratitude. GOD BLESS AMERICA AND GOD BLESS THE PHILIPPINES AND MABUHAY!
Dr. Manuel “Manny” Hipol
Chairman, C.U.F.O.T, Inc.
Captain, Medical Corps, USN (Ret)