Supply drive provides relief to families in need

Maelonie Tamondong, the owner of the Giving Tree Preschool Centers (PNC file photo)

The economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has caused many families on Guam to struggle as they try their best to ride out this global crisis.

Seeing this as a chance to help the community, the Giving Tree Preschool Centers, in partnership with Fizz & Co, are holding a supply drive to provide relief to families in need.

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Maelonie Tamondong, the owner of the Giving Tree Preschool Centers, says she thought of holding a supply drive after seeing so many residents call out to public officials for help.

“We’ve seen a lot of people affected by the COVID pandemic. A lot of people are out of work and have had their hours cut or furloughed. A lot of them are reaching out to elected officials. They’re having a hard time making ends meet, putting food on the table,” Tamondong said.

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So she partnered with Fizz & Co.’s LeAnn Crisostomo and established the restaurant as their drop-off point. The drive is accepting non-perishable food items, personal hygiene products, baby goods, and toiletries to be donated to Catholic Social Services. Each donation, she says, is sanitized before it’s stored.

Tamondong says the support from the public has been great and encourages the community to help in any way they can.

“I don’t do it for any recognition. I really do it because we have the platform to do it. We’re able to do it and it’s just something we’re all about. Our preschool is The Giving Tree. We try to give back to the community in any way we could or any opportunity we have,” Tamondong said.

The supply drive is ongoing every day from 12 to 5 p.m. at the Fizz & Co. at the Agana Shopping Center until Saturday, May 16.

The drive is currently setting up a system for monetary donations and for anyone who needs direct assistance may contact Catholic Social Services at 635-1442.