Indigenous tribal Filipinos across the country proudly showcased their indigenous Peoples (IP) games in the 2023 Cultural Communities Week (CCW) celebration. The theme of this year’s celebration, “Mga Laro ng Salinlahi, Saligang Haligi ng Katutubong Lipi” (Games of Ancestral Heritage, Foundation of Indigenous Culture), aims to emphasize and exhibit traditional indigenous
games and sports as a means through which Indigenous Peoples can assert, commemorate, advocate for, and safeguard their diverse cultural heritage and identity, both within the Philippines and globally.

National Commission on Indigenous Peoples (NCIP) Chairperson Allen Capuyan, during the opening program of 2023 CCW on Monday (July 10), underlined the importance of indigenous games and sports in bringing people together across political, religious, and cultural divides. Capuyan said that sports is crucial in bridging the gap between the Indigenous Cultural Communities(ICC)/IPs and the mainstream society, leading to a greater understanding and recognition of one’s identity.

“It teaches many important values and abolishes social differences as it gives everyone equal opportunities to perform,” he said. It also provides an opportunity for the public to learn and experience aspects of the IP culture through participation in the various recreational sports activities. “Let us continue to raise awareness about the IPs/ICCs in our country by honoring their contribution and relevance to the nation’s progress and preserving their cultural heritage,” Capuyan enjoined.

The showcase of traditional games does not only invigorate the identity of IPs but more importantly, convey their story, shared NCIP-CAR Regional Director Atanacio D. Addog. Gaspar A. Cayat, NCIP Commissioner for CAR and Region 1, added that it is these indigenous games that “we
find our indigenous cultural identity in its purest and most innocent expression – a childlike wonder and love of being an indigenous person.” Philippine Information Agency Director General Jose A. Torres Jr., himself a Subanen from Mindanao, also extends his message of support for the
CCW 2023 highlighting the need to preserve the deep culture of IPs not only for the country but the other parts of the world.

“Ipinapaalala sa atin ng mga katutubong larong ito na maituturing na yaman ng lahing Pilipino ang pagiging bata. Tuloy-tuloy nating ituro sa ating mga anak ang nakagisnan nating kultura na minana natin sa ating mga ninuno,” he said. During the virtual program, some IP games of the Cordillerans such as the ‘chepap’ or ‘depap’ (catching pig/chicken), ‘kinuyuran’ or ‘kinujuran’ (tug-of-war), and
‘kadang-kadang’ were presented. The Cordillera region is home to about 1.2 million IPs collectively called “Igorots”.


Amianan Balita Ngayon