Arts & Culture

Arts & Culture: Dama Ko, Lahi Ko brings Filipino culture to the world on June 12

MANILA, PHILIPPINES  — This coming June 12 marks the 123rd Independence Day of the Philippines. It is a significant date; and yet, many Filipinos celebrate it more as a non-working holiday than a reminder of hard-won freedom. 

This 2021, the Dama Ko, Lahi Ko movement aims to change that. What if June 12 became a celebration of Filipino culture, an annual reminder of the heritage that can help continue to forge Filipino identity? In fact, what if the celebration could be felt and shared by every Filipino?


Dama Ko, Lahi Ko is a call to celebrate Filipino culture through the five senses: paningin, pang-amoy, pandinig, panlasa, and pansalat. Each sense allows each Filipino to appreciate every piece of our culture. By integrating culture into everyday life, it can become our soft power, a way to appeal and attract preference towards destinations, products, services, and experiences that only the Philippines can offer.

Paningin celebrates the scenic views of our landscape, from our world-class beaches, lush tropical rainforests, and abundant marine life, to our colorful fiestas, intricate tribal patterns, and the warmest of smiles.

Pandinig celebrates the iconic sounds of the local scenery including the festive drumbeats during Ati-atihan, the yell of the taho vendor, OPM playlists on repeat, or even the greeting, “Kumain ka na?”

Pang-amoy celebrates the Filipino scents that your nose can follow – the garlands of sampaguita at church, the pungence of durian, the good morning of kapeng barako, accompanied by the inviting aroma of sinangag.

Panlasa celebrates the flavors you can savor across the archipelago’s 7,641 islands and beyond. Heirloom recipes during family gatherings, the contrasts of soy sauce and calamansi, puto bumbong and latik – Filipino flavors cover and color the entire spectrum.

Pansalat celebrates the intricate textures and handmade expertise ranging from the rattan bilao laden with pancit, baro’t saya made from pinya and abaca, to the textures of nature.

Each one of these senses has a unique perspective from every Filipino from around the world, and that’s what Dama Ko, Lahi Ko wants to bring into the spotlight. So get ready to become part of this celebration. Share photos, videos, music, anything that showcases Filipino culture through the five senses. You can tag @damakolahiko and #damakolahiko across Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Tiktok. 

The Filipino Culture Collective, a group of creative professionals passionate about Filipino culture, have also prepared a website for free downloads of Dama Ko Lahi Ko logos, patterns, graphics, and more. 

All these are free to use and remix. A sticker set is also available for download on Viber, Telegram, and GIPHY. (Just search “dama ko lahi ko.”)

Here’s a complete calendar leading to the grand celebration on Independence Day:

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