By Lorenzo Z. Reyes

For many member- and former member-states of the British Commonwealth, the day after Christmas Day (December 26th, the feast of St. Stephen) is celebrated with families giving cash or gifts to needy and other less-privileged neighbours. Legend has it that the presents were placed in nicely-wrapped Christmas boxes, which led to the day being called “Boxing Day”. No one really knows when this tradition started but to this day, millions of families worldwide celebrate Boxing Day.

In our own little pond – in Valle Verde 5 – we continue a 5-year yuletide tradition started by then board president Raul Agustin, when the Valle Verde 5 community distributed gift packs containing food items and other goodies to some 300 first-time recipient families belonging to six puroks of Barangay Ugong in Pasig City last December 26, 2010.

The gift packs were donated by Valle Verde 5 residents led by long-term donor Tony Puyat and the families who participated in VV5’s Family Day/Bingo Social and Walk-For-A-Cause activities.

In keeping with its 5-year tradition, the VV5 Board and Admin Staff, ably assisted by Ugong Barangay Chairman Engracio Santiago and his staff, organized a programme featuring song and dance numbers from future X-Factor and Idol luminaries from both VV5 and Barangay Ugong.

VV5 board president Mon de la Llana was very appreciative of the assistance and cooperation of Barangay Ugong officials led by Barangay Chair Jessie Santiago. Mon likewise thanked VV5 board members Raul Agustin, Eli Santiago, Danny Palma and Dra Pat Aranas, as well as our tireless Admin Staff who prepared the bags and refreshments.

All together, it was a fruitful and immensely rewarding project that both Barangay Ugong and VV5 hope will continue for many more years. Indeed, good king Wenceslas must have felt really good as he looked out on that “…feast of Stephen.”