Rizal Hall, Malacañan Palace
24 January 2014

Canada-based participants of the ‘Winter Escapade: It’s More Fun in the Philippines Tour (WE-IMFIT PH)’ met with President Benigno S. Aquino III during a courtesy call at the Malacañan Palace.

In his message, President Aquino expressed his gratitude to the Canadians for sending their assistance in the wake of Typhoon Yolanda.

“The Filipino community (in Canada) prevailed upon the Canadian government to render its utmost assistance in the tragedy that happened with Yolanda …the love that you have shown and bestowed on our countrymen and again, on their behalf, I thank all of you for this tremendous effort that enabled us to overcome and continue to overcome the challenges besetting our country as we try to recover, reconstruct and rehabilitate and build back better,” he said.

In cooperation with the Department of Tourism, Philippine Ambassador to Canada Leslie B. Gatan led the first “Winter Escapade” that offered Canadians, mostly of Filipino descent, a chance to escape Canada’s icy temperatures and explore the country’s top tourist destinations and cultural heritage.

The call is the last leg of their seven-day Philippine tour which was joined by more than 200 Canadians and expatriates. Part of their itinerary also included relaxing in Boracay Island, island-hopping in Guimaras, witnessing the Dinagyang Festival in Iloilo and Ati-Atihan in Kalibo, and tasting Roxas City’s seafood delicacy.