Mark is a good student, finishing in the top three in his high school in the Philippines. But despite this accomplishment, going to college wasn’t a certainty. His parents’ medical issues meant the family budget was tighter than ever, and there just wasn’t anything extra to help pay for college fees.
When most girls her age were playing with dolls, Faith was wondering where she and her sister would get their next meal.
Faith was 7 when her father passed away. Three years later her mother grew ill and died, leaving Faith at 10 years old to care for herself and her younger sister.
By Barclay Martin, new channels coordinator for Unbound
Sitting in the home of Yollande and her mother, Jeanne, I was given a beautiful glimpse of human potential. In a place where homes are commonly assembled with humble and often salvaged materials, their home is simple, but stately. When I commented on how lovely it felt to be in their home, Jeanne replied, “We have built our life one step at a time, including this house.”
Yollande is 21 and has been raised alongside her siblings in their neighborhood on the outskirts of Antsirabe, Madagascar. Their neighborhood’s name translates to “No Place for Lazy People.”
Welcome to Tsiratrinikamo.
By Larry Livingston, senior writer at Unbound
Think about a favorite teacher from when you were a child. What do you remember most about that person? I would bet that, for most of us, what we remember has more to do with the character of the teacher than the particulars of what they taught.
Teachers are, first and foremost, role models for the love of learning. Their passion for knowledge — and, more importantly, the meaning that underlies knowledge — stimulates students to begin to ask the kind of questions that can change their lives and take them on a never-ending journey of discovery.
Daniel, an Unbound scholar living in El Salvador, wants to be that kind of teacher. Inspired by the love of mathematics that he witnessed in his own teachers, Daniel has discovered within himself the heart of an educator. He wants to give to others what was first given to him.
On a normal day, Daniel rises at 3:30 a.m., prays with his family and then sets out for the two-hour truck ride to the university in Santa Ana.
“Here I receive a theory class because I’m an instructor for a group of students,” he shared. “I go to my classroom and wait for my students; I give the class as an instructor of math. When I finish class I spend a few minutes trying to resolve doubts they may have. Sometimes I have to go to a cyber cafe to get information that I’m going to use in the next class or stay with my classmate resolving exercises.”
By the time he returns home it is late at night, but for Daniel the long day is worth it because of the fulfillment he receives from being able to share his gifts with others who hunger to learn.
As we observe World Teachers’ Day on Oct. 5, we celebrate Daniel and all the members of the Unbound community who have a passion to learn and to teach. They are a blessing for the young people of their communities and a reminder for all of us of the priceless treasure that education truly is.
Help support scholars like Daniel. Donate to Education today.
Gladys is an Unbound scholar in Mexico. After her father died of cancer 10 years ago, her mother, Marcelina, took on the burden of providing for the whole family.
“My mother has been the hero in my family,” Gladys said. “She bravely put our family on her shoulders and has provided for us by herself.”
Receiving an Unbound scholarship gave Gladys the resources she needed to stay in school at a time when her mother was sacrificing her own needs to pay for tuition.
Read more about Gladys and her mother here.
To join in the celebration, we would like to share the story of Claudia, a sponsored teen from Guatemala. Claudia volunteers at a local school library and works with the children there to help them become more engaged in reading.
By Jordan Kimbrell, Unbound writer/editor
Most mornings, Yurani walks alone to the bus that takes her to the local university, a short 15-minute ride away.
Though she walks alone, Yurani knows she has her family and the entire Unbound community beside her.
Before heading off to catch a bus, Yurani helps her younger brother, Daniel, make the bed. Some weekdays, she also helps her mother prepare lunch for the whole family.
For Yurani, cooking meals is one of her favorite chores, and it gives her good practice for her studies. Yurani is studying gastronomy, or the art and science of gourmet cuisine.
“When I was younger my dream was to be a chef,” Yurani said. “[Now] my dream is to have my own restaurant.”
If you met Dalia on a Guatemalan street, you’d want to get to know her. And you’d want to help make her dreams a reality.
When you see Dalia, in her brightly patterned traditional Mayan dress with her long dark hair flowing, you know she’s a girl on a mission.
She’s strong, determined and compassionate.