Please donate, write or organize
Joey Lozano defied the odds. For three decades, he survived dangerous missions to defend human rights using his video camera, in the Philippines, a country that ranks high, year after year, for most journalists killed. Joey went into hiding numerous times, and he dodged two assassination attempts. Once, bullets whizzed past his ear as he made his escape on motorbike.
But Joey couldn’t beat the odds of cancer. He died in his sleep on September 16 – at home and surrounded by his family.
Since August 1st, 2005, Joey had undergone three surgeries for colon cancer, and had been struggling to recover. His wife, Renee, has been by his side along there with their five children, Frances, Karl, Toto, Paula, and Ossie.
Remarkably, during this difficult time, Joey has also become a grandfather. He shared his hospital room with his daughter Paula, after she gave birth on August 5th to Baby Rizal, named after his grandfather, Rizal Joey Lozano.
Joey Lozano is a long-time partner of WITNESS, a human rights organization based in New York City; he sat on its Board of Directors for three years. As a WITNESS partner, Joey produced numerous hard-hitting films about many diverse issues, from the impacts of the pineapple and tourism industries, to the war on terrorism and Indigenous Land Claims of the Nakamata coalition. As added ammunition, he frequently published companion investigative reports in The Philippine Daily Inquirer. In 2000, Joey also spent a year at the University of Chicago under the Human Rights Advocates Fellowship Program.
On his journeys and in his struggles, he gathered a large circle of international colleagues and supporters. His passion and commitment are an inspiration to all who have met him.
Now, we are calling on this circle to draw closer in hopes of supporting Joey’s family. In a personal effort, Sam Gregory (WITNESS) and Katerina Cizek (Seeing is Believing), Robert Quinn (Scholars at Risk, New York City) are creating the LOZANO SUPPORT FUND to provide some financial relief to the Lozano clan in honour of Joey’s tireless dedication to social justice.
Most pressing, of course, are the medical bills for Joey’s treatment in the last seven weeks. Renee is inundated with invoices for the medicine, the bed, the doctors, the surgery and we would like to ensure that these bills do not become a burden on the family.
But as we look beyond the medical bills, we also see a need for us recognize Joey’s children. Two are in college – the eldest, Frances, is working on her Masters; Toto is studying film, and the youngest, Ossie, is still in high school. Paula, the proud mother of baby Rizal, is also currently living with Renee.
We aim to create a fund that offers several opportunities to participate for those who have been inspired by Joey. Donations can be made in a one-time fashion, or ideally, can be made in an on-going commitment to participate annually for the next 3 to 5 years.
This way, we hope to not only offset the current medical expenses, but also hope to look forward to supporting Joey’s greatest legacy of all – his offspring!
There are three things you can do:
1) Donate and pledge money
We are in the process of creating a vehicle that will handle donations. In the mean time, we are taking immediate contributions, and we highly encourage a pledge for repeat donations on an annual basis for 3-5 years.
Please donate today, and pledge further to donate every September 1st, for 1 to 5 years.
Please write an email to firstname.lastname@example.org confirming what you wish to pledge, and we will send the information on where to send cheque etc depending on their country.
2) Write a letter to Joey’s family
If you were touched by Joey’s work and would like to share your memories of him, or your condolences, with his family please write to: email@example.com. We will forward to the family.
3) Organize a benefit/fundraiser
We welcome any efforts to raise funds through events, or screenings. Should you like to use the film “Seeing is Believing” in a public screening to raise awareness/funds, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.