Help pours in after photo of Filipino boy studying on street goes viral
A homeless Filipino boy has been overwhelmed with aid after a heart-wrenching photo of him studying on the pavement and using faint light from a McDonald’s outlet went viral on the Internet.
Nine-year-old Daniel Cabrera will fulfill his dream of becoming a policeman after donations of cash, school supplies and a college scholarship poured in, his mother, Christina Espinosa, told AFP on Friday (July 10).
“We’re overjoyed. I don’t know what I will do with all of these blessings,” the stunned 42-year-old grocery store employee and domestic helper told AFP.
“Now, Daniel will not have to suffer just to finish his studies.”
The photo, posted on Facebook last month by a college student, showed Cabrera doing his homework on a wooden stool placed close to a McDonald’s window to catch the light from the store.
The 20-year-old medical technology student Joyce Torrefranca captioned her Facebook post: “I got inspired by a kid.”
It was then shared close to 7,000 times on the social networking site and reported by local television.
The New Paper had carried the story of the boy on Thursday (July 9).
Ms Espinosa and her three youngest children, including Daniel, have been living in her employer’s mini-grocery store since their shanty home was gutted by fire five years ago.
She said she earned just 80 pesos (S$2.40) a day working at the store and as a domestic helper for the store’s owners in their nearby home.
She augments the income by selling cigarettes and candy on the streets on Mandaue, an urban centre on Cebu island in the central Philippines.
An undated photo showing Daniel Cabrera with his mother Christina Espinosa in Mandaue City. PHOTO: AFP
Their grocery store home is close to the McDonald’s outlet that had served as Daniel's study nook, she said.
Ms Espinosa said, aside from the cash, school supplies and scholarship offer that would guarantee his education through college, people had given school uniforms and a reading lamp.
The local church and government social welfare office had also received aid on his behalf.
Miss Torrefranca’s post was shared around the world and in multiple languages, including Spanish, German and Portuguese, all touched by the boy’s perseverance.
“I couldn’t believe how my post went viral and helped him in his studies,” Miss Torrefranca told AFP on Friday (July 10).
See the video on www.rappler.com