By DEEDEE M. SIYTANGCO
“And while they were there, the time came for her to give birth. And she gave birth to her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.” Luke 2:6-7
Our family, the children of Amado R, Munson and Paz Asuncion Intengan Munson, held our annual reunion last Christmas Eve at Bella Vista.
As with past Christmas Eves, we played host to the orphans from the Mother Teresa Spinelli’s House of Treasurers in Tagaytay. We became friends almost two decades ago when my husband Sonny and I were able to help Monica, one of the babies there, get an operation at the Philippine Heart Center with the director performing it!
The Augustinian nuns became friends and the children were our frequent guests come Christmas Eve and Easter Sunday. This year was no different. The children came and received gifts from our son AJ and his wife Ayet, and their son, one-year-old Disney.
Our niece, Starr Weigand and her friend Pierre Martin Reyes also distributed gifts and tokens and we all had a happy lunch.
It really is more blessed to give than receive. It is a lesson for all our kinfolk.
* * *
“Christmas is for children,” says Robert Laurel Yupangco, CEO of Zoomanity Group, one of the leading companies in the theme park industry. Taking Robert’s sentiments to heart, his company, Zoomanity, took the opportunity to give back the happiness and blessings to less fortunate children this season. Yupangco stressed that this activity would start a ripple effect and further impact the future of the kids.
Aside from promoting their advocacy, which is called the 4Es (Education, Environmental Conservation, Exhibit, and Entertainment), the company believes that it is part of their corporate social responsibility to give happiness to those kids who need it the most. Through one charitable activity called “Christmas Gift Giving,” Zoomanity Group chose sets of children from different foundations to experience a whole day of fun, love, and care in their theme parks.
Over 500 kids got the chance to have free entrance to all Zoomanity Parks and enjoy one exciting day of interaction with their favorite animals. Different gifts were given away plus exciting shows were held.
From Ruins at Metropolitan Avenue, Rafael Palma Elementary School, to Zoocobia Fun Zoo and Zoobic Safari l and Paradizzo and Residence Inn, the Zoomanity Group made sure that these less fortunate children felt the true essence of Christmas and that is to be loved and cared for even just for the day. Robert had the help of generous sponsorships from Kiwanis International, Jollibee Foods Corporation, Frontrow Enterprises, Mega Global Corporation, HMR Philippines Inc., and Haverson Enterprises.
Yupangco is grateful to everyone who helped make 2018 Christmas Gift Giving an exciting, rewarding, and productive event that brought great joy to the children. We salute you, Robert, for showing compassion to the less fortunate youngsters through your theme parks. May more young businessmen and executives follow your path. We also cite Robert Lim Joseph, tourism and environmental champion who started a campaign to clean up Manila Bay.
In his capacity as the new Commodore of the Manila Match Club, he knows how badly polluted the bay is. Now DENR secretary Roy Cimatu is leading the cleanup campaign. Cheers, gentlemen! To your success!
* * *
The Brave Warrior Kids Foundation (BWKF) held their Christmas party at O.B. Montessori Greenhills last Dec. 15. The founders are Richard Jacinto, Noel Lopez, Ernest Tagle, Andrew Navarro, Adrian Ocampo, Ace Barretto, Reyman Sy, Pocholo Razon, and Gabby Eigenmann. The young founders established Brave Warrior Kids on Feb. 2016. Their mission is to help kids with cancer and Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA) by providing financial assistance that improves the quality of lives of their beneficiaries and families.
The foundation partners with other organizations to raise funds and build awareness about the ordeal of underprivileged
families battling SMA and cancer. Since its founding, BWKF has been able to provide much-needed assistance to many families.
The gift-giving this year was doubly touching with the presence of Ernest Tagle, one of the founders. Ernest was still in his wheel chair, barely able to speak, but fully aware of his surroundings. He had suffered a near fatal stroke two months ago, which left him half paralyzed and unable to speak.
Through prayers and healing sessions with Fr. Fernando Suarez, Ernest can now write down simple thoughts. He was excited during the Brave Warriors affair and tried to interact with the beneficiaries.
Ernest is almost like my son, as his mother is my very good friend, Elizabeth Sison Tagle. He regularly joined our media forum, Bulong Pulungan sa Sofitel. His father is painter E. R. Tagle and his brother is singer George Tagle of The Angelos.
Cheers to the Brave Warriors and may their tribe increase!
Tags: Deedee M. Siytangco