Central and North Burnett Times - - FRONT PAGE -

AR­NEL Bun­cayo is happy to call Aus­tralia home, and share a part of his cul­ture with the Filipino Cook­ing nights at Mulgildie Ho­tel.

The most re­cent one of these was held in the evening of the Mulgildie Mar­ket fun day, which was highly suc­cess­ful.

Ar­nel was asked to put to­gether the cook­ing night by pub­li­can Julie South, the fourth time such a night has been held at Mulgildie Ho­tel.

“I just love to cook,” Ar­nel said.

“I’m in charge of cook­ing at the house, my mum’s a cook so I picked it up from the fam­ily.”

For $25 a plate, peo­ple could get a buf­fet se­lec­tion of fried rice, beef broc­coli and pork Adobo.

The Filipino com­mu­nity in Monto has grown in the last few years.

“There are 11 fam­i­lies here in Mulgildie and Monto,” Ar­nel said.

Ar­nel came to Aus­tralia in 2009 on a 457 work­ing visa at Bai­ley Creek Pig­gery, along with his wife, Christina and three sons Aronel, An­thonel, and Amiel.

Now, the fam­ily has moved up to a per­ma­nent res­i­dence visa with the hope of one day get­ting Aus­tralian Cit­i­zen­ship.

The re­cent ax­ing of the 457 visa pro­gram has left some ner­vous as to what it will mean for their ap­pli­ca­tion.

“Since we al­ready have a per­ma­nent res­i­dency, we’re okay,” Ar­nel said.

The el­dest son is 20 and at univer­sity, the sec­ond is 17 and the third is in year 10 of Monto State High School.

Though he trav­elled back to visit the Philip­pines to visit for the first time in seven years last year, Ar­nel is happy to call Aus­tralia home.

“We al­ready set­tled, we’re al­ready here, a few have got­ten their per­ma­nent cit­i­zen­ships, al­most all of us have our res­i­den­cies,” he said.

The cook­ing nights are an op­por­tu­nity to share the Filipino cul­ture with the wider com­mu­nity.

“We, as a mi­grant com­mu­nity, are in­tro­duc­ing our val­ues and cul­tures to Aus­tralia, which is im­por­tant,” Ar­nel said.


COME TO­GETHER: Mem­bers of the Filipino com­mu­nity Bun­cayo, Sikat and Al­coreza fam­i­lies. Ar­nel (green shirt, sec­ond-right) led the event.

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