The first Pilipino in her family born on Turtle Island, Emerald Asuncion has experienced a variety of cultures from coast to coast that continues to inspire her own daily exploration of what it means to be a diasporic, decolonizing, indigenizing Pilipino. Having last visited her mother’s home in Bicol in 1995, Emerald is constantly excited and interested in the diverse roots of our Pilipino culture. Her love and appreciation for the groundedness of dance & movement in her body truly stems from her experiences dancing with Karilagan Dance Society in the late 1980s and she is re-energized by having connected with Kathara to share our vision and build with our community.
For the past 5 years, Emerald has worked as a champion & advocate for patients of medical cannabis with the continent’s longest running non-profit Wellness Centre & Dispensary, The BC Compassion Club Society – building relations, breaking stigmas, and providing education, support and outreach to patients, healthcare professionals and various levels of government. Prior to this, she dedicated her time to ocean & environmental conservation in various capacities through the Vancouver aquarium Marine Science Centre for about a decade. Honoured to join Kathara Pilipino Indigenous Arts Society as Board Secretary in December 2018, Emerald looks forward to sharing her experiences gained in non-profit and collective spaces to navigate new paths for Kathara.
In her spare time, Emerald is constantly self-educating on topics ranging from self-care to stand-up comedy. She is currently a Level 2 scholar of Hisakupin – Filipinos in Diaspora, Tagalog lessons with guro, Micajieu Velasco, and always looking for pals to converse with!