Last September 11, 2017, through the initiative of Simbahayan Community Development Office, Thomasians welcomed 50 Lumad delegates at the UST Central Seminary Gymnasium.
The visitation of Lumads was a part of the annual Lakbayan ng Pambansang Minorya, started on August 31, 2017. The Lakbayan is now on its third year. The Lumads travelled to be heard in Manila and to demand for their rights, which were strongly affected by military operations in Mindanao.
In line with this month-long event of solidarity with indigenous people, Father Rector Herminio V. Dagohoy, O.P. said “Thomasians must learn and understand from the stories of IP, especially their struggles in their own homeland.”
A series of advocacy fora and cultural exchange sessions were also held in during their stay in the University.
Citing a study of United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), 14-17 million indigenous peoples IPs belong to 110 ethno-linguistic groups.