Buklod Center was established in 1987 as a drop in center for women in prostitution outside the former U.S. Subic Naval Base. Its founding was a joint effort of a core group of women who worked in clubs, Gabriela Commission on Violence Against Women, Mennonite Central Committee, and the Division of Family Ministries of the National Council of Churches in the Philippines. Since the withdrawal of the U.S. Navy and the resulting decline of the entertainment industry in November 1992, Buklod works to build and empower this community of women and children.
Buklod is a Filipino word meaning a bond which brings people together. Buklod believes that prostitution is one form of violence against women’s human rights. “Ikaw ang Babaeng May Karapatan” (You are a Women with Rights). It is a non-stock, non-profit, women’s organization that seeks to raise the consciousness of and promote solidarity among urban poor, the street and bar women of Olongapo City and Subic Zambales. Buklod also seeks the welfare of the women's children, particularly the Amerasian.
Buklod’s main programs are organizing, education (formal and informal), livelihood and advocacy networking. In 2001 Buklod Center become a People’s Organization. Currently, women from the bars, clubs and survivors are running the organization.
Buklod dreams of one nation with justice and free from exploitation, violation and discrimination against women within the aspects of economy, politics, culture and gender. This dream will be happen if we unite the different sectors who are victims of exploitation and discrimination and also the support of individuals and organizations that promote the interest of women and children.
Buklod is one organization that works to change the situation of women, particularly women in prostitution. We can do this through education, like conducting seminars and trainings, to empower women within their situations, and to implement the different programs and advocacies in the interest of women.
Buklod’s objective is to advocate for the interests of women, particularly those who are in the prostitution industry.
Organization’s contact information
Executive director or President Ms. Alma Bulawan
Buklod Center Inc. # 26 21st Place, West Bajac Bajac Olongapo City Philippines.
Our organizational contact telephone / Fax no. 063 47 2235826
email address: buklod (at) info (dot) com (dot) ph
2007 Buklod Information. Profile for the Planning of the International Women’s Network Against Militarism meeting, San Francisco, CA. Email to author, September 5, 2007.