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Edcarl Realiza Cagandahan

Juris Doctor-III

“If I could also teach people to be grateful, we could have an amazing world where negativity
could not grow and foster, and children would have a smile on their face.” (Catriona Elisa
Magnayon Gray, Miss Universe 2018)

Last December 14th, 2018, the Dr. Jovito R. Salonga Center for Law and Development (Salonga
Center)—with its director, Atty. Mikhail Lee Maxino, its staff, and volunteers from the Silliman
University College of Law and Foundation University College of Law and Jurisprudence—
expressed its gratefulness for all the blessings it has received all throughout the year by sharing
the same with the children of the Amador Dagudag Memorial School Day Care Center as part of
its annual Christmas Gift-Giving Program.

The fun-filled morning started with a stretching activity to energize the children and the
participating Salonga volunteers. Thereafter, the Salonga volunteers introduced themselves
individually, followed by the children introducing themselves. They then played various games
together such as “The Boat Is Sinking,” “Paint Me A Picture,” and “Balloon Relay,” all filled
with hearty laughs and joyous spirits. A brief prayer was then offered before the children enjoyed
their lunch prepared by the Salonga Center.

Shortly thereafter, Salonga Center Director Mikhail Lee Maxino gave his energetic yet
heartwarming message towards the children of the Amador Dagudag Memorial School Day Care
Center, reminding them that Christmas is “the celebration of the Lord Jesus’ birth (on Earth) and
that [we] should thank God for giving Him to [us],” the same being his main basis as to why the
office continues, and will continue, to give gifts towards the best blessing God has ever given
this world: the children. Meanwhile, the Salonga volunteers went out to get the surprise goodies
in store for the children. The Salonga Center prepared school bags filled with snacks, school
supplies, hygiene kits, and medicines which were given to the children upon Atty. Maxino’s cue.
Their smiles grew from ear to ear upon the sight and receipt of the bags, a sight which could melt
anyone’s heart any day.

In the past few years, and as mentioned, the Salonga Center has been annually giving gifts
towards various orphanages inside and outside Dumaguete City as part of its Christmas Gift-
Giving Program. The most recent recipients of the same program were the children of the Sto.
Niῆo Orphanage where they also received bags filled with goodies and a hefty meal shared with
the staff, guests, and volunteers of the said office. This program is generously supported by
multiple sponsors and donors, which the Salonga Center perpetually appreciates. For this year’s
Christmas Gift-Giving Program, the Dr. Jovito R. Salonga Center for Development wishes to
thank Mayor Remollo, Hon. Alviola, Julio Sy, Jr., Dr. Ferdinand Amante, and Madame Joy Suan
of the Amador Dagudag Memorial School Day Care Center and coordinator to the DSWD of
Dumaguete City.

As lawyers and future lawyers alike, we are expected to “act with justice, give everyone his due,
and observe honesty and good faith” (Art. 19, New Civil Code); but as stewards of Christ, it is
but imperative that we heed to the true nature and spirit of Christmas: to be grateful with what
we have, and to thank God for giving them to us. May we all have a Christmas season filled with
happiness, and let the reason for that happiness be God through his most beautiful blessings on
Earth: His children.