Filipino-Canadian MERFA YAP-BATACLAN (right) is one of the recipients of the Diamond Jubilee medal.
On May 21,2012, Prince Charles and wife Camilla went to Canada to celebrate the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II. The celebration also took place in Commonwealth countries around the world.
As part of the celebration, the Diamond Jubilee medals of distinction were awarded to Canadians who have contributed significantly to their communities.
On May 23, Prince Charles presented Diamond Jubilee medals in Saskechewan legislature saying: “Over the past three days, I can say from the heart that we have both been incredibly moved by the stories of the hundreds of Canadians we have met who have selflessly served their communities without thought of recognition or thanks — whether it is running a breakfast club at their local school or teaching young people practical skills for future employment.”
Simultaneously, in Toronto, Joe Oliver, Minister of Natural Resources hosted the medal presentation event at the VIP house of the Canadian Forces. Among the recipients was Merfa Yap-Bataclan cited for her tireless dedication in advocating for the rights of the vulnerable group of caregivers serving the Canadian society.
As volunteer Counselor, Merfa has been advocating at the Ministry of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism and also at the Ministry of Labor since 2007.
Consequently, she has campaigned for changes in policies and regulations which resulted in some amendments in the Live-in Caregiver Program (LCP) of the Federal Government in 2010 and some new procedures in resolving labor relations issues with the Ontario Ministry of Labor.
Now a Canadian citizen, she continues to voluntarily serve the Filipino Canadian community particularly women, children and families in crisis through a non-profit organization called the Filipino-Canadian Community House.