A Philippine Human Rights NGO providing Psychosocial Services and Rehabilitation to Internally Displaced Persons and Survivors of Torture and Organized Violence.

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Latest News

Balay has likened to an act of a “thief in the night” the secretive manner of the burial of the late deposed  dictator Ferdinand Marcos at the Libingan ng mga Bayani (LnmB-“Hero’s Cemetery”) on November 13.  

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The Balay Rehabilitation Center, convener of the United Against Torture Coalition in the Philippines (UATC) and civil society prime mover of the accession of the Philippines to the Optional Protocol To The Convention Against Torture (OPCAT), has organized a forum to mark the tenth anniversary of the entry into force of the OPCAT in Hotel Rembrandt on November 11, 2016.

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Balay was able to document 44 allegations of torture within the third quarter of the year, covering the period July-September 2016. The victims are all residents in conflict-affected areas in Mindanao, notably in the island of Basilan where government forces are engaged in a deadly operations against the ‘lawless activities’ of the Abu Sayyaf Group, and in the Davao region and in North Cotabato where the New People’s Army has been posing an armed challenged against the Philippines security forces.

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BALAY Celebrates its 26th Year Anniversary

Balay community members gathered at the Balay office last September 30 to celebrate the organization's 26th founding anniversary. The activity, which started at 4 o'clock in the afternoon, was opened with a solemn community prayer of thanksgiving followed by a sharing of each person's experience in working with Balay.

With the theme of "Owning our reason for being and new-found spirituality; our journey continues!" the participants exchanged stories, life's lessons and insights about the rich and colorful moments they had as part of the organization. The sharing revolved around what they think was the meaning or reason behind their decision to join Balay in its journey to promote human rights and contribute to societal change. The results of the sharing can only be described as rich, emotional and full of wisdom. Both the newcomers and veteran members of Balay learned a lot about each other. At the end of the process, the group affirmed their commitment to continue the legacy of and to contribute to the attainment of a free and humane society as envisioned by the founding pillars of Balay 26 years ago.

Balay was established on September 27, 1985 by the late Sen. Jose Diokno and Dr. Mita Pardo de Tavera primarily to cater to the needs of political prisoners incarcerated during the Martial Law regime of President Marcos. It also served as a half-way house for newly released political prisoners, undergoing psychosocial rehabilitation program to help regain their capacities for active participation in the family, community and societal affairs.

Sen. Diokno headed the first Presidential Committee on Human Rights (PCHR) which served as the precursor of the Commission on Human Right (CHR). Before his death, he was the chief negotiator of the government in the first peace talks with the revolutionary National Democratic Front (NDF). Dr. Mita Pardo de Tavera served as the first secretary of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) following the ousted of the Marcos dictatorship in 1986.

A modest dinner was shared by everybody. Capping the activity was the forging and strengthening the commitments of everyone present. Likewise, a prayer of remembrance was also offered for the Balay members who have already passed away.