Last December 2018, Stepping Stone celebrated a “Magical Christmas” at its Sucat campus. As the the event was nearing, the excitement also was building up with almost everyone asking what surprises they would expect as as every year, Stepping Stone’s way of celebrating Christmas gets better and warmer.
There was something new that our never tiring and passionate Executive Director had in mind to make this a very special celebration for everyone. A selection of Christmas songs was sung LIVE! by the International Keepers Choir, a group of young male and female singers who bring smiles to everyone who hear them sing.
Our students, parents, trustees and guests enjoyed listening to the enchanting voices of the female lead vocals and the rhythm of the sounds the different musical instruments created. Everyone became young at heart, perhaps others really much younger as if sweetly reminiscing something while smiling and listening to the choir.
The venue was full of life as there was a lot of food choices from Jollibee Chickenjoy, peach and ube pies, Joe Kuan special siopao, Inengs Special Barbeque, Stepping Stones’ own buttered popcorn and even different flavors of ice cream in cones.
A photo booth was also set up for instant souvenir photos that will bring many fond memories for years to come. All our students and even parents came in different costumes and made for a very colorful magical Christmas celebration. Raffle prizes were abundant with everyone paying attention for their names to be called.
Mascot appearances of Elsa, Trolls, Minion and a Smiling Santa Claus made the day for everyone young and young at heart. The mascots had their own dance numbers pulling kids to dance with them. It was such a delight to see the smiling faces of our students. Most of our kids took pictures with the different mascots with parents in tow snapping up their best poses. Even some of the Trustees of Stepping Stone joined in for poses with the mascots. Another unforgettable moment for our kids again.
An area was set aside to showcase paintings of Tomas Diaz, a presidential awardee for his religious paintings. Tomas has shown that he can rise above his Autism and make a difference. Mom, Nati Diaz, gave a few words of encouragement to parents and guests to look beyond their childrens’ disability and focus more on their abilities. Paintings of Tomas are in striking orange colors that bring out the beauty of his art works.
Partners in Service such as the Rotary Club of Makati District 3830 headed by President Fred Pascual led a contingent of Rotarians and Rotary Anna from their club together with Immediate Past First Ann Cecile Dayrit who brought gifts for all of our students under the club’s Last Angel program. As a Partner in Service, Stepping Stone is a yearly beneficiary of this project.
The school has much to thank the Rotary Club of Makati for always bringing joy and cheer to all our children with indivualized, age appropriate gifts that are chosen with our kids in mind. The generosity of Rotarians from the Rotary Club of Makati has been unparalled.
Appco Direct Int’l Inc. (APPCO), Stepping Stone’s newest partner in the schools’ fund raising projects was also at the party and handed in a check to Trustee & Adviser Rafael “Paing” Hechanova, President and Chairman Mundy Gonzalez and Executive Director Dayal Nandwani. Appco has been working very hard in setting up booths raising substantial funding for the school in a very short period of time since they started last September.
Some members of The Indian Ladies Club brought gifts for the kids too for use in their classroom such coloring books, reading books and different writing and coloring tools.
British School Manila (BSM) represented by Chairman Rob Salamon who was joined by his spouse Eloy, have also been untiringly supporting Stepping Stone through their yearly Community Service Learning Week. Rob also represents the Lloyd George Foundation, as field director, and has been instrumental in supporting building facilities for the school.
Peace Corps USA another service partner was represented by Monica Collier- Vountry Manager, Milosil Cruz- Peace Corps Response Coordinator, Khristale Del Rosario - Program Assistant and Carol Cochrane- Peace Corps Response Volunteer who also enjoyed the funfare, food, mascots and presentations.
The beauty of togetherness, happiness and thoughtfulness on just one day a year, seeing all our partners and benefactors and especially our beneficiaries come together to celebrate Christmas, will always be remembered as a very special day for all of us who put our children first.