Thursday, November 22, 2012


Stall 119 Bantay Aracade, Rizal St., Bantay Ilocos Sur Phone: 63-905-3623195

In order to generate funds to sustain the operations, Bituen tied up with several individuals and organizations to come up with a culture hub where many of the activities of Bituen shall be held including Reading Caravan. ToyKalapawMi, derived from 'daytoy kalapaw mi' which means "our small hut" in vernacular Ilocano is the name of its new Library & Museo-Shop. The Library's books are donated by Read Philippines, Darien Books, Asia Foundation, German Embassy-Manila, and its officers and members. More recently, books also came from individuals including Ms. Violet Whim Alderleaf and Ms. Carlota Steven Fealy.

The concept of the ToyKalapawMi's library is to encourage membership. Teachers and children or youths from indigent families will be sponsored and free, while others are paying members. The books to be given to indigent members can be exchanged if it is maintained in good condition in order to encourage children to keep on reading. Many of the maintained books, however, are focused on culture and arts. Juvenile books are also available including popular comic books like Asterix, Batman, Peanuts, and even manga. It hopes to one day stock books from Matt Groening, Neil Gaiman and other inspiring author artists.

The Museo-Shop will showcase cultural artefacts from all around the world collected by antiques dealer Isabelita Palpallatoc, founder of S.I. Jars & Antiques (Roosevelt Avenue in Quezon City) and Dos Pueblos at SM North EDSA's Home World also in Quezon City. It will also include one of a kind craft items, upcycled materials, and other collectibles and novelties for gifts and souvenirs.

Another feature of ToyKalapawMi is its Gr3encycle section. It will be a drop off point for useful items that are no longer needed by homes and individuals, and other members may barter, or take home their own pick.

 The soft launch of ToyKalapawMi concided with volunteer Erika Marchant's birthday (seated & with flower crown below). Above shows Bituen patron Jovita Tremor Arellano, Erika, and Mrs. Rodillas, principal of Lussoc National High School. Below photo shows from right Bituen officer and multi-awarded writer Crisostomo Ilustre, Erika and Mrs. Ilustre.

Above photos- interior of ToyKalapawMi
All entrance fees and proceeds are used in Bituen's Reading Caravan book purchase, free skills development trainings, and sustainability & waste management workshops.