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1CH1NOY Season 2 Episode 1 Recap: Going Beyond Borders, Breaking Stereotypes

“The problem with stereotypes is not that they are untrue, but that they are incomplete”

These are the powerful words of Nigerian writer Chimamanda Adichie that truly resonate with the modern Chinoys of today. 

It is not untrue that most Chinoys in the Philippines pursue a business-related career or get married to a fellow Chinese, but these stereotypes are certainly incomplete. More and more Chinoys are breaking tradition in pursuit of their individuality and passion and we are here for it.

In the newest season of CHiNOY TV’s successful series Chinese by Blood, Filipino by Heart, different Chinoy personalities shared how they went beyond borders, broke stereotypes, and showed the world what it truly means to be a genuine Chinoy.

Here are some of the inspiring takeaways from this season’s premier episode:


Modern times call for modern measures

Gone are the days when Fil-chi children are trained only for business or degrees related to the sciences and mathematics. Today, Chinoy parents support their children’s career paths wherever it may lead to and lucky for TV host Valerie Tan, this was the environment she grew up in. 

“When my parents saw that I had an inclination towards arts, public speaking and the media, they were so supportive. They would bring me to my auditions and up until I was starting already and struggling to get a project on TV, they were there for me,” shared Tan. Indeed, this paid off as Tan now has a flourishing career as a TV host and has even been nominated as Best Morning Show Host and Best Lifestyle Host as Star Awards for TV.


Celebrate your Chinoy individuality and uniqueness

Your Fil-chi roots should be something to be proud of and not something to hide. Valerie Tan recounts how she initially introduced herself as Valerie Roxas at her stints and gigs when she was just starting out on TV because “Valerie Tan” for her, was too Asian. It was her boss that taught her to embrace her Chinese roots, saying that she should use “Valerie Tan” because it is what makes her unique.

“It was really a light bulb moment for me that the part that I was insecure about, it was actually what makes me special,” shared Tan.

This was also the case for Miss Earth 2017 Karen Ibasco who experienced moments of doubt during her pageant days because of her Chinese ethnicity. “I was completely Asian. I was Filipino and half-chinese” shared Ibasco, which is what she initially did not want to be in a pageant where mestizas and European looks were favored.

Despite these troubling thoughts, Ibasco pursued her passion to become a beauty queen and she emerged victorious, being crowned the fourth Filipina to win the Miss Earth title. 

Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there

“If you never ask, the answer will always be ‘no’”. This is the mantra that sportscaster Stan Sy lives by when asked how he achieved his success as a sportscaster today. His passion for sports fueled his desire to become a sportscaster despite the personal doubts he made because he thought that he did not have what it takes to be in front of the camera. 

Sy’s bravery paid off as he is now the official sportscaster for WWE Philippines.

Film director Ian Loreños shared how his passion for filmmaking was fueled by his desire to put Chinoy identities out there and gain more representation for the community. 

Before kasi, most of the talents we got from the Chinoy community are extras lang or supporting roles. Now, we got major roles from Chinoy actors and I’m proud of them,” shared Lorenos.


Explore the limitless possibilities

Whether it is a career in fashion design, culinary arts, journalism or other fields far from business, Chinoys should not be afraid to delve into unfamiliar territory. Learn to follow what your heart desires as this is the first step to breaking the boundary.

Model Reins Mika learned this in her teens when she entered the modeling industry. Growing up in a traditional Fil-chi family, stepping into the non-conservative industry of modeling was not easy but her desire to explore other possibilities was stronger.

“There is a need to explore and find yourself outside this community,” said Mika.

Writer Yvette Tan also took the same route as Mika and pursued a career that a typical Chinoy will not take: writing horror stories for a living. This would have had a number of Chinoy parents shaking their heads and telling their kids to focus on the more “practical” careers.

“I’ve learned to understand that whatever my mom does comes from a place of concern and comes from a place of love. It’s really up to me to take it as it is and work around it,” said Tan.

This did not stop her from pursuing her dreams head-on and with her determination, Tan was able to receive two prestigious Carlos Palanca awards for her notable storytelling and her books have been exhibited internationally. 


Being a true Filipino-Chinese: the best of both worlds

A genuine Chinoy does not consider himself/herself as halves of the two races. Rather, they are 100% of both. This can be confusing for a young Chinoy who usually grows up in a traditional Chinese environment. Being exposed to the Filipino culture may confuse them with their two seemingly polar identities but this need not be.

President of Xavier School Fr. Ari Dy shares how he came to terms with his own identity as both a Chinese and a Filipino, especially when his young eyes were opened, finding out there was an entire Filipino world outside the tight knit community of Chinoys he comfortably grew up in. 

“A lot of questions about identity forced me to reflect on my cultural identity. That sense of always being in between worlds is something I felt very much. In the Chinese community, ‘okay, we’re all Chinese’ but when you’re in the wider community, you have to explain your being Chinese,” said Fr. Dy.

There may be times when Chinoys have their loyalty questioned simply because of their ethnicity but Fr. Dy shares a beautiful reminder for all Chinoys who undergo the same thing:

“You’re not any less Filipino because of your ethnic roots. I value my Chinese identity very much… But I’m also very clear, very strong that this is my country, I am Filipino,”.

Catch the next episode of Chinese By Blood, Filipino By Heart on Sunday at 8PM on the CNN Philippines channel.




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