“In 1988 Cyn Romero, Brod Bello, and a few other Filipino students wanted to form an organization that stood out from the other ones that already existed. They wanted one that would be more inclusive, not one that isolated itself from outsiders. This new organization was never meant to be exclusive at all. Its members fully welcomed anyone, Filipino or not, who wanted to hang out with them and who could tolerate − or even contribute to − their quirkiness. To say ‘I can′t join OYFA; I′m not Filipino’ was not a good enough reason not to join; we′d reply, ‘So?’ Moreover, they wanted to be more involved in other parts of the University, not just their own members. Primarily, they wanted the members to have fun, while at the same time learning to get along, work, and have fun. Most important of all, the organization′s members would learn something about their own culture and would share it with others. Why? To truly understand Filipinos − and therefore ourselves − we really need to know where we have come from. So, OYFA was born…” −− OYFA alumni Dr. Ron Labuguen
The Organization of Young Filipino Americans was founded in 1988 in order to heighten awareness and appreciation of the Filipino/Filipino American culture to its members and the greater UVA and Charlottesville communities. It also serves as the liaison to the University of Virginia students as part of the Filipino Intercollegiate Networking Dialogue, consisting of universities along the East Coast.
Barrio Fiesta is our yearly Filipino cultural show which showcases a skit, cultural dances, and modern dances. It showcases over 100 performers every year serving as one of the best and largest cultural show on Grounds. It′s only the culmination of months of skit, dances, and bonding with your fellow friends. Many memories and friendships were made throughout Barrio season, and many alumni come back just to relive the moment. Barrio is something that you will remember for the rest of your life.