Aga pleased with well-attended gift-giving campaign launch

Aga Muhlach leads the annual Christmas gift-giving program MaAGA ang Pasko sa Jollibee, which is now on its 12th year.

Aga Muhlach was pleased with the well-attended launch of his annual gift-giving campaign MaAGA ang Pasko sa Jollibee, a project in collaboration with fast-food giant Jollibee Foods Corporation.

“I’m really happy maraming nag-attend ngayon sa media,” said Aga, who is the proponent of the campaign. “We’re just happy [that] we’re on our 12th year. And sana lang ma-maintain namin yung [dating target, which was one million] or to do better,” said Jollibee’s principal endorser.

Started in 1995, MaAGA ang Pasko sa Jollibee was created to help distribute old toys and books, donated by Jollibee customers, to lesser fortunate children throughout the country. Last year, Jollibee distributed more than one million toys and books. In fact, because of this toy and book donation drive, the President and CEO of Jollibee, Tony Tan Caktiong, was hailed as the Corporate Citizen of the Year by the 2006 Asian Business Leader Awards.

Inez Reyes, Jollibee's corporate marketing vice president, said that the judges of the award were surprised to know that this kind of gift-giving project exists in the Philippines.

“Nagulat po ang mga judges na in a third world country, like ours, ay nangyayari po ang ganitong klaseng pagse-share and gift-giving. Kaya very significant po ang Ma-Aga ang Pasko [sa Jollibee] even in the corporate image of Jollibee. And the fact na na-recognize po ang Pilipinas as the leading Corporate Citizen po, we’re very very happy about it,” explained Reyes.

In line with this, Jollibee thanked the media for continuously supporting the project. “Thank you very much po for all the friends, especially the media, for writing about the program. All these twelve years, talking about it and continually supporting it. Kung hindi po dahil sa suporta ng press hindi po lalaki ng ganito ang ating programa,” added Reyes.

With this year’s campaign title: "MaAGA ang Pasko sa Jollibee—Sandosenang Taon ng Bigay-Saya," 12 media groups—which includes Abante, ABS-CBN Publishing, BusinessWorld, Daily Tribune, Journal Group of Publications, Manila Bulletin, Manila Standard Today, Mirror Group of Companies, MMPI, Philippine Daily Inquirer, Summit Media, and The Philippine Star—were also given the chance to choose 12 beneficiary institutions, apart from the others that were already identified by the Department of Social Welfare and Development.

Among the new beneficiaries that were handpicked by the media group were Operation Damayan, Tahanang Walang Hagdan, Sa Aklat Sisikat, Children’s Hour, Children’s Library, Hospicio de San Jose, Golden Acres, Caritas Manila, Virlanie Foundation, Cribs, Bantay Bata, and Chosen Children Village.

Meanwhile, Aga thinks that the outcome of this project would still be positive despite the economic problems that the country has been experiencing these past few years.

“Siguro people are tired of problems [that are happening now]. Last year, it was [fun], but it’s more fun now. Parang it’s more fun now this year, I think, because the kids are grown-ups already. And then ito, parang may positive naman na mangyayari,” Aga pointed out.

Aga will also help distribute the gifts and lead the special Christmas bash in the selected institutions. Donations can be dropped in properly-marked boxes in Jollibee stores nationwide until January 15, 2007.






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