DAGUPAN CITY – The city government through the City Library launched ‘Ate, Kuya Kwentuhan Mo Naman Kami’ at the city library with the 2017 Manlingkor ya Kalangweran (MYK) young city mayor Jilian Kay Madison S. Fernandez and 2015 MYK young city councilor Matthea Flynne T. Sim as guest storytellers on December 22.

The project, which intends to involve all MYKs, aims to develop them on how to tell stories and enhance their leadership skills.

“In the same manner, the little ones will be more at ease at mas makaka-relate sila kung ang magbabasa ng story sa kanila ay ang ating mga MYKs,” said Librarian III Corazon Caguioa Langit of the City Library.

Jilian, who read the stories of “The Tortoise and the Hare” and “Twas the Night Before Christmas” along with Matthea Flynne to at least 64 kindergarten pupils of Malued Elementary School at the city library, disclosed how she enjoyed her role as storyteller to the little ones.

“This is a good program because we are able to enhance the abilities of these kids who are often undermined that they do not understand English but when you talk and interact with them they are more than what we think they are,” said Jilian.

Jilian said she chose to read “Twas the Night of Christmas” because she wanted to make emphasis on Christmas and the character of Santa Claus who serves as hope to children.

She gave the children gifts and acted as Santa Claus to them after the storytelling.

“Being born in a good family, it shows me that I should be very thankful and very lucky for what I have but at the same time there are a lot of people that do not have the privileges that I do so as much as possible I should do my part to make sure that they do feel the spirit of Christmas. Christmas is not only about receiving gifts but it is also on giving gifts. This Christmas I choose to give gifts and I really hope that these little kids will share the same experience when they grow up to other children,” said Jilian.

Meanwhile, Matthea was happy to have experienced the role as storyteller as well. She said she was able to learn how to handle kids and was glad that they were very cooperative.

“They were excited perhaps with the gifts but more than that they were really interested in listening to the stories. I hope to replicate the same and do more of this in the future,” said Matthea.

Malued Punong Barangay Filipina S. delos Santos was grateful that Jilian and Matthea acted as Santa Claus to the children, whom she said were among the less fortunate members of her barangay.

“Kami ay nagpapasalamat dahil naging Santa Claus sila sa mga bata. They were even made to have a list of their Christmas wishes na kinuha nila Jilian at Matthea. Bibihira po ang ganitong mga pagkakataon. And we are truly grateful sa kanilang dalawa,” said delos Santos.

Another set of MYKs are scheduled to do the same at Barangay Bacayao Sur on December 28 with 2016 young city mayor Ella M. Claveria. (Joseph C. Bacani/CIO/Dec. 22, 2017)