DFS donates 56 gifts, 2 Christmas trees to Kagman shelter
T Galleria of DFS Saipan donated over 50 gifts and two Christmas trees yesterday to families and children at the Kagman Emergency Shelter.
DFS president Marian Aldan-Pierce presented Community and Cultural Affairs Secretary Robert Hunter yesterday with 56 gifts and two Christmas trees complete with decorations after the DCCA secretary reportedly reached out to her last week.
“[Hunter] wondered if DFS would be kind enough to donate a Christmas tree, decorations, and toys and gifts. I immediately advised him that DFS is more than happy to help out,” Aldan-Pierce told Saipan Tribune.
She noted that some of the staff of the luxury shopping center set out last week to buy age-specific gifts that were also wrapped, along with two Christmas trees, for the shelter.
“DFS Saipan is honored to be asked to be a part of this,” Aldan-Pierce said. “In times like these, we have to open our hearts and wallets to help those who are unable to provide for themselves and every child should have a Merry Christmas and have a gift to open, regardless of [their] circumstance,” she said.
With 39 families and 56 dependents under 18 years old who are currently staying at the shelter, DFS was able to ensure that all 56 underaged dependents will get a gift.
“We wanted to make sure that there was something for the kids and families at the [Kagman shelter] for Christmas, but there was not a lot of time between their transfer from Public School System schools, the Saipan Aging Center, and the H.O.P.E. Center [in Marpi] and Christmas to make this happen,” DCCA’s Hunter told Saipan Tribune.
“This was incredibly generous of them and we did not expect to see one business cover gifts for all of the children. …We were overwhelmed, and we are very thankful to DFS Saipan Ltd. and Marian Pierce for making this happen,” Hunter added, noting that his department sent letters to “a number of businesses” asking for help.
“Within minutes of receiving the letter, [Aldan-Pierce] responded, letting us know that they would be providing trees and gifts for all of the kids at the shelter,” he said.
The Kagman Emergency Shelter Facility was turned into an emergency long-term shelter for victims of Super Typhoon Yutu in late October. The repurposed former juvenile detention facility sustained little damage from Yutu, Hunter said in a previous interview, noting that the bunker-like architecture of the facility is ideal for withstanding future typhoons. He previously indicated that discussions to make the facility a permanent long-term shelter are in the pipeline.