Our lives would have never been easier without the efforts and sacrifices my mom had done to take her life out of poverty.

Growing up in a family of 8 with parents working as farmers was never an easy life for my Mama. She often tells us about how far they (her and her sibs) had to walk just to get to school every day. She had so much dreams she wanted to reach that even when she got burns from a spilled hot water, she still went on and never made any excuses to be absent as long as she can handle and bear the pain.

When all her siblings gave up studying, Mama never did. She graduated High School and looked for a way to enter into college. She applied as a student aide in a university and gladly she was accepted. He also took a part-time job just to be able to support herself. She went on until her last year in college, she graduated and right after that, she flew to Manila and entered the Armed Forces of the Philippines.

In the Philippines, education was said and reported to be the most prioritized thing of all the budgeted branches of the government but ironically hasn’t made the best for all to be accessed. Remote areas have not been given that much attention. That the same situation as my Mama had gone 35 years ago still continue: walking too far just to reach the nearest school. And also one more thing that hinders children to continue school was the lack of financial support and dreams for oneself.

With those barriers, people continue to go on with the vicious cycle poverty without any progress. As for my Mama, she really valued education so much that no matter what problems she encounters, she fights back and find solutions to it. She was hopeful. She was ambitious yet complemented with actions to reach her goals. She was strong to stand before every storm.

And today, she lives with pride that she has gone through many of life’s challenges without giving up. It is now our turn to live the lives we always dream of without giving up on our studies, without giving up on life’s challenges. Because this world isn’t made to be perfect with everything just fun and simple and happy. There are complications, there are problems. You’ll be cheated, you’ll be fooled. My Mama would always say,” Do good in your studies. Education is the only thing we can guarantee to leave upon you.”

NEVER EVER TOLERATE POVERTY. Whether one takes formal or informal education, having the right knowledge makes us equipped on circumstances that we feel like we are being torn and pulled down. Women are often viewed by stereotypes as the weaker and more sensitive individual and showing them with the same feedbacks will allow discrimination so we shouldn’t let them be. If you think you’re already standing tall and still people bring you down, stand even taller, be stronger.

Take action! This post was submitted in response to Girls Transform the World 2013.


Hi, Say, yours is a touching story of thriving despite adversities. Like mother, like daughter. Just a note about tagging -- I think you forgot to check the box on Digital Action, "Girls Transform the World". Not a big worry though. You can edit your post and check that box (Girls Transform...) and then submit the post again. Thank you for sharing your story!

Blessings, libudsuroy

''Every Day is a Journey and the Journey itself is Home.'' (Matsuo Basho)

Say,hi, again.The "Girls Transform" checkbox is below the "Topics" and just above the "Submit" button. I hope you will find time to edit your tag. Thanks!

Blessings, libudsuroy

''Every Day is a Journey and the Journey itself is Home.'' (Matsuo Basho)

Glad that i came cross your post i like when you have the ability to [post your story and your mama and acknowledge the effort she has been putting to educate her self. Thank you Say Stay strong Ola

It is never too late to try make your way to your dream and left up your expectation.Sudanes Women Building Peacewww.suwepmovement.org

You are fortunate to have a brave mother who was never discouraged of her circumstances. She is a role model not only to her children but all other women. That's the way it was in my time. Nothing prevented us from finishing our studies. But times have changed. Even if government have prioritized education, even if schools are nearer compared to 20 years ago, children especially the boys are still less motivated to do well in their studies.

The situation in the Philippines is very much different from other third world countries. Here the participation and achievement rates of girls are better than boys in the elementary and high school levels. Both girls and boys are given equal opportunities. Our challenge now is how do to prevent the girls from getting pregnant too early so that they can finish school.

Ooops, I got carried away.

Good luck Say.

Thank you for the personal story of your mother and how she has influenced you. It is a powerful one and I am glad you shared it with World Pulse.


Say, Thank you for sharing your story. It is truly inspiring! I really like your last paragraph. Your words are encouraging and motivating. Keep up the good work!