- Posted May 9, 2012 by
Morong, Bataan, Philippines
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Photo essays: Your stories in pictures
Remnants of the 'Boat People'
The history of Indochinese refugees in the Philippines started when two motorized light fishing boats with 34 men, 20 women and 11 children on board set off from the village of Phu Khang, Vietnam on May 12, 1981. After almost a week of surviving powerful waves of the open seas, these boats reached the shore of Morong, Bataan.
The Philippine government then opened a facility in Morong, Bataan called the Philippine Refugee Processing Center. The camp was used as a final stop for Indochinese refugees (Vietnamese, Cambodian and Laotian) seeking way to a permanent resettlement to other countries, including the United States and Canada.
The International Catholic Migration Commission / Joint Voluntary Agency, a U.S. Government funded Agency served as the overseas representative in the resettlement of the Indochinese refugees.
The facility was operated with complete amenities including school, hospital, library, market, house of worship and sports center.
After more than 10 years, the facility was permanently closed, following the last batch of asylum seekers who were given resettlement in other countries.
Today, the former Refugee Camp has turned into Bataan Technology Park. The piece of land with billets is now a barren land. But the remnants, history and memories of the ‘Boat People’ remain.