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Kanoa Football Club shares holiday spirit with CHC dialysis patients

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(Press Release) — The Kanoa Football Club celebrated a very successful 2019 season by distributing gifts to patients and staff nurses at the Commonwealth Health Center’s Dialysis Center on Saturday.

Members and officials of the club’s boys U15 and U18 teams and girls U16 squads also sang Christmas carols.

Northern Mariana Islands Football Association president Jerry Tan joined the Kanoa players in their visit at the dialysis center and praised them for stepping up not only on the field, but off the pitch as well.

Kanoa Football Club president Merlie Tolentino said the visit and gift-giving were their way of saying “thank you” for a very fruitful season while encouraging their players, especially the young ones, to reach out to people who need help and support.

She noted that the Asian Football Confederation’s Social Responsibility Committee, of which she is a member, aspires to give back to the community.

AFC president Shaikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa, during a meeting of the committee earlier this year, emphasized that football can also bring good and hope to so many people.

“Singing Christmas carols for the people at the dialysis center was a new experience for us soccer players. It definitely put us on an emotional roller coaster. Some of us even shed tears at the end,” said Ericka Santiago, a member of Kanoa’s girls U16 team.

The club was the first group to visit, sing carols, and personally hand gifts to patients at the facility this holiday season.

“Seeing their smiles when we sang and as we gave them the gifts was so heartwarming. This encounter we had with the patients made us grateful that we are all able to enjoy the holidays in our own homes and with our families,” Santiago said.

One patient commented that they look forward to visitors at the center, especially at this time of the year. He added that he was glad to see young people taking time to visit them and he was surprised to receive gifts from the players.

On Monday, at 10 a.m., Kanoa FC members will visit and sing Christmas carols at the Manamko’ Center.

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