In 1980, early immigrant families from Pampanga met every weekend to overcome home sickness. During that time, they helped other Filipino migrants to settle in Australia by offering temporary shelter. Two years later, the group formed a social club called Pampangueño Club so they can extend their help to less fortunate people of Pampanga. Knowing that it’s not easy to fund such a venture, they decided to do a fundraising ball.

They picked the Monday night before Melbourne Cup Day since it is a public holiday. Over the years, it has become a popular event in the Fil-Australian community. Attendees showcase their best suits and dresses as Melbourne Cup attire. They socialise and make connections in the name of charity during the annual formal dinner dance.

The Pampangueño Club of Victoria’s (PCV) Melbourne Cup Dinner Dance is one of the most anticipated Filipino community events in Australia for its festive mood and stylish attendees. It is renowned as a memorable society gala where guests enjoy dancing, relish the good food and watch videos detailing where the proceeds of the funds raised in the previous events went. The dance floor is always packed while those who want to have a good time while donating to a good cause.

This 6 November, the Melbourne Cup Eve Dinner Dance will once again gather Melburnians for a night of fun and entertainment at 501 Receptions in Footscray.

United for generosity

In an interview with The Philippine Times, Roy Carbungco, PCV President, relates his experience in the club. “Since I became involved with the club until I became president, we have raised from $5,000 up to $10,000, depending on the number of guests and donations from various sponsors. All the money we raised goes directly to our various projects in Pampanga and other parts of the Philippines.”

They conducted projects such as helping the victims of Mt. Pinatubo’s eruption; Christmas gift-giving to Aetas in Pampanga; freshwater projects in partnership with the Rotary Club of Brimbank Central and Rotary Club of San Juan West; “Lapis at Papel” drive for Grade One and Two students in various schools in Pampanga; feeding program for inmates and donations of disaster equipment in Angeles City, donation of rescue boats in coastal areas of Pampanga, Casiguran, Aurora province and Metro Manila; literacy program in various provinces in Philippines; and helping flood victims in various parts of Philippines.

The Pampagueño Club prides itself as an institution for 35 years that kept its dignity by ensuring funds collected are appropriated to the most in need. The entire Club will work hard to make the event much more glamorous, faithful to its tradition of class and elegance. They will conduct their traditional competition of Best Dressed Male and Female; and Best Male and Female Dancers. The nightlong dinner dance will be filled with fun, glamour and beauty.

The current officers of the Pampagueño Club are: President- Roy Carbungco; Vice President- Bernadette Miranda; Treasurer – Gina Belvis; Assistant Treasurer- Lydia John; Secretary – Michael Wright; PRO- Judy Wright and Rey Isleta, and Directors- Eric John, Sonny Muli, Flor Basilio, Paul Pasilio, Lina Muli, Fed Naguit, Tina Naquit and Ann Antonio.

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