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55-Year-Old Streetsweeper Graduates with Degree in Business

A 55-year-old streetsweeper graduates with a business degree and goes viral as she inspires many others to reach for their dreams, no matter the circumstances. After all, age is just a number, huh?

Reaching for Your Dreams

A lot of people dream of graduating from college and finding a good job. But such is a difficult aspiration for many, especially the poor who can’t afford to go to school. Many Filipinos end up quitting their studies to find a job to help support their families.

For these people, completing their college education is a goal that’s too difficult to attain.

streetsweeper graduates business degree
Photo credit: Melody Jen Fernandez Ramirez / Facebook

But streetsweeper Ofelia Mondaya did not stop dreaming. While she was not able to even complete her high school back when she was younger, she enrolled with the alternative learning system of the Department of Education (DepEd).

She received the equivalent to a high school diploma in 2014. Then, she enrolled at the Colegio ng Lungsod ng Batangas in Batangas City for a course in Business Administration.

Because she also needed her job to support herself and her family, Nanay Ofelia continued being a streetsweeper. Her kind supervisor helped arrange her schedule so that she could still work and be in school, too.

Many years later, Nanay Ofelia finally graduates from college! While she was unable to march on stage due to the cancelation of graduation activities, she and her family are proud that she was able to achieve this wonderful milestone!

streetsweeper graduates business degree
Photo credit: Crizel Mondaya / ABS-CBN News

Sobrang pinagtiyagaan niya talaga. Halos sa madaling araw umaalis siya, magtatrabaho, magwawalis tapos uuwi siya ng umaga na, maliwanag na. Tapos mag-aaral siya kasi marami siyang assignment,” narrated Nanay Ofelia’s daughter, Crizel.

Proud na proud kami sa kaniya. Hindi man kami nakapagtapos, katulad ng kanyang pinapangarap sa amin, masaya kami kasi siya ‘yung halos tumupad na rin ng pangarap namin.

The next step for Nanay Ofelia is to use her diploma to find a regular job because she’s only a ‘job order’ employee at the city hall. She hopes she can find a better job so that she can send all her 7 kids to college.

Huwag na po nating hintayin na tayo ay magkaedad pa o maging matanda bago mag-aral… Kailangan po talaga maging positibo tayo sa buhay at gawin po natin ‘yung tama at alam natin na makakatulong sa atin. Ganoon din po sa ating kapwa,” said Nanay Ofelia.

College After ALS

Can you go to college after graduating from ALS? The answer is “yes”! In fact, the ALS graduation certificate is also equivalent to the high school diploma; thus, you are eligible to take college courses. Many ALS graduates have gone on to complete their college degrees and find success in their new careers.

Inspiring

Couple Who Had Wedding Reception at Mang Inasal, Picks it as Christening Party Venue

A couple who had wedding reception at Mang Inasal goes viral again after they picked the same fast food chain as venue for their child’s christening party. Truly practical, huh?

From Wedding Reception at Mang Inasal to Christening Party

In the Philippines, special occasions like weddings, christenings, and milestone birthdays (debuts or first birthdays) usually involve a lot of money. That’s because people expect a big party for the event.

So, imagine how impressed people were when couple Rian Eran Baynosa and Rhaquesa Vicente Mosende had their wedding reception at a Mang Inasal outlet!

wedding reception at Mang Inasal
Photo credit: Babse Dondon

They went viral some months ago for their Mang Inasal wedding reception because they spent just around Php3,000 for it. That’s definitely a far cry from the hundreds of thousands of pesos that some people spend for theirs.

But the practical couple did it again! When they had a baby, they didn’t throw a lavish party like many people would in the Philippines.

Instead, they chose to do the party at Mang Inasal, again!

While they didn’t reveal how much this second Mang Inasal party was for, it was for certain not as expensive as most christening parties might go.

Photo credit: Babse Dondon

Plus, it’s such a practical party that they didn’t even have to cook or prepare anything for it – and the crew were the ones who cleaned up and washed the dishes afterward. Talk about a hassle-free party, huh?

Many netizens were also supportive of their choice, saying that it’s good for them to be practical and save their money for other more important, long-lasting things.

Congratulations for being practical and thinking more about your future! God bless you,” one netizen wrote.

Photo credit: Babse Dondon

But others thought that Mang Inasal should at least officially acknowledge the couple’s efforts – and for bringing their name as they did these viral parties.

Pag di pa nmn kayo kinuhang endorser ni mang inasal nyan aywan ko na lng talaga,” one commented.

Fast Food Chain Parties

Fast food chains know that people love their food and that many people are practical. That’s why many of them offer party packages.

For example, Jollibee is known for its kiddie parties, but some McDonald’s outlets in Hong Kong also offer wedding receptions.

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Inspiring

Family Cheers Up Student Crying Over “Low” 83 Grade: “Ako Nga 73, Eh!”

A family cheers up student crying over “low” 83 grade, with mom telling her “Ako nga 73, eh!” The sweet, cheerful interaction as they encouraged her to try better next time and not worry about her “failing” grade went viral.

Family Cheers Up Student Crying Over 83 “Low Grade”

Different people and families handle certain situations differently. But it’s sweet to know that your family has your back and will always be there with you, no matter how tough the situation – even if that’s a failing grade or some unsuccessful venture.

For one family that went viral, though, the “tough situation” was brought about by a student (named Julia) who was crying over her “low” grade. It turned out that most of her grades were over 90% but she has one 83% in Filipino.

family cheers up crying student
Photo credit: @missflawlessss

She was crying over the 83%, in fear that her mom would scold her and get mad because it was low.

But when she handed the digital card to her mom, the latter laughed and told her it was alright because back in the day she even got 73% — and was already happy about it! LOL

Ako nga 73, eh!” the mom repeatedly assured the crying student who continued to apologize and cry over the “low” grade.

Photo credit: @missflawlessss

The video uploader, possibly her sister, also kept on cheering her up and also laughing that she was crying over the “low” grade because she was already happy with grades in the “line of 8” back when she was a student.

She even jokingly told Julia that she would be so happy and content with getting that kind of grade that she’d be absent for two days after that because she already knows she passed the subject.

Though they were joking around and laughing, it was clear that they’re trying to cheer her up. The mom also encouraged her to try harder next time.

Photo credit: @missflawlessss

Because she was sad that she might not be an honor student because of the grade, the family told her it was alright! She doesn’t have to push herself that hard over a grade. Isn’t that great?

Here’s the video:

@missflawlessss

Ako nga 75 sa math eh

♬ original sound – SACHZNA – SACHZNA

What’s the Passing Grade in Philippine Education System?

The passing grade is 75% in the Philippine grading system.

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Inspiring

For 30 Years, Paralyzed Man Continues to Work While Lying Down to Earn a Living

A paralyzed man in Camiguin is proving everyone that his condition is not a hindrance for him to earn a living. Jerome Nacaitona could no longer move the lower part of his body but he continued to work while lying down.

jerome paralyzed man
Screengrab: KMJS via Facebook

Jerome’s inspiring story of strength and courage was featured on GMA’s Kapuso Mo  Jessica Soho. According to Jerome, his youthful dreams were crushed when he got into a car accident just a month before his 18th birthday. Prior to that, he kept having bad dreams not knowing it was a bad omen of things to come.

“Palagi akong akong nanaginip na nalulubog dito sa putik ’yung katawan ko. Halos siguro isang buwan. Pabalik-balik,” he said.

Due to the accident, Jerome lost his ability to stand and got paralyzed from the waist down.

“’Yung likod ko parang nadurog-durog. Agad inoperahan ako para lang daw makaupo kasi ‘pag wala daw ’yun hindi daw makaupo,” he recalled.

jerome paralyzed man
Screengrab: KMJS via Facebook

Jerome was blamed for his condition

Since then, life has changed for him. Jerome revealed that his family even despised him and blamed him for their poverty.

“May sarili silang pangarap hindi nila maabot kasi sila nagbabantay. ’Yung tatay ko ganun din. Sinisisi ka. Hindi raw mahirap kung hindi dahil sa akin,” Jerome said.

Because of this, Jerome decided to move out and live on his own. He started working on selling copra to earn a living. At first, he sat down on a wheelchair until his back hurt. So, he decided to work lying sideways in a bed. Kids would sell him dried coconuts for P6 and we would turn them into copra and sell it for P41 per kilo.

jerome paralyzed man
Screengrab: KMJS via Facebook

Everyday for three decades, Jerome would tirelessly work bed-ridden in a bed. Using a bamboo stick, he would pick up the coconut and skin the shell. His nephew Jovy helped him smoke-dry the kernels to make it into copra.

According to Jerome, he works to pay off his monthly loan. It’s like a cycle of paying and loaning again to survive. “Pambayad sa loan. PHP5,700 isang buwan. Matatapos na sunod na Martes. Loan na naman uli. Kasi walang laman,” he said.

Jerome receives support and help

The KMJS helped Jerome and took him to a specialist to be evaluated. Dr. Wency Daya, a neuro-spine specialist said Jerome had complete spinal cord injury. Jerome was also given a wheelchair, folding bed, groceries and financial assistance. The Department of Social Welfare and Development also registered Jerome under its persons with disability (PWD) list.

Jerome’s inspiring story is a reminder that no matter how hopeless it may seem, we still have control over lives. As the popular adage stated, “If there’s a will, there’s a way”.

For those who wish to help, please deposit to: Bank: Cebuana Lhuillier Rural Bank
Account Name: Jerome Nacaitona
Account Number: 001138860824

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