Milestone moments don’t happen every day. For Jolly, a sponsored youth in the Philippines, graduating from college is one of his happiest memories. While most graduates walk toward the stage to get their degrees, Jolly was walking toward his mom.
“When my name was called by the host in our graduation, my mother was clapping her hands,” said Jolly, a sponsored youth living in the Philippines. “I was the one who got her hand and we walked together up the stage. She was the one who put the medal on my neck. I was so happy that moment,” he said.
Jolly graduated cum laude from university with a bachelor’s degree in education, concentrating in technology and livelihood education. His next step is to pass the licensure examination for teachers and, if possible, pursue a master’s degree.
Jolly was sponsored nine years ago at just 10 years old. His father, Dioleto, is a farmer and the breadwinner of the family. His mother, Thelma, is a homemaker who helps out on the farm and occasionally sells garments she makes. With four children, it was difficult for Dioleto and Thelma to support the needs of the family on their income.
When Jolly got sponsored, he and his family started receiving benefits — like food, medical treatment and assistance with educational costs — to help them sustain their daily needs. The benefits wouldn’t have been possible without sponsorship.
Being sponsored helped Jolly with his education, and it also helped him grow into a stronger individual.
“Being a sponsored member,” Jolly said, “helped me build my personality and social aspect. They taught me to be strong and release my potential.”
Poverty can be a heavy weight, but Jolly never lost sight of his goals. He never gave up hope in his dreams. “[Unbound] will help bring out the best in you,” Jolly said was his message for other potential sponsored youth. “If you think there’s no hope at all, it is not true. Don’t lose hope; I myself can attest to that. ‘Wat ginagaid sa kapobrehan,’ a quote which always reminds me, ‘No person shall be tied to poverty.'”
Help someone be free from poverty by sponsoring a child.