“I want to make a difference”

By Lisbet Esmael
World Vision Communications Intern

Poverty may or may not kill your dreams – it’s up for you to decide.

For Resamee, it should be taken as an inspiration to get stronger in life. “I learned to know how to be responsible and how to dream big in order to get out of poverty.”

A former World Vision sponsored child, Resamee now serves as a teacher in a public elementary school in their province in Mindanao. Despite the opportunity to teach abroad, she chose to stay with the aim of helping her students to also experience the hope she had before when she met World Vision.

Resamee said she never had the things other children had. “My father works as a coconut farmer while my mother is a full-time housewife. Since we are poor, I couldn’t get the things that I wanted as a child. I felt that I was deprived of my childhood. ”

This opened the young mind of Resamee as she realized she needed to do something to help her family even in her own simple ways. “We had a sari-sari store in the neighbourhood so I volunteered to look after it. I had only a few friends but I learned to improve my basic mathematics from accounting our sales and by counting the money at the end of the day,” she shared.

Her past situation allowed her to enhance her capabilities that helped her to be the person she is now. But one thing she would never forget was the day she met World Vision that led her to believe and witness a brighter life ahead.

“World Vision did not only provide me with decent bags, school uniforms, shoes, and books but also inspired me to explore my potential. I was able to discover my gift as a child. I attended seminars and conferences with other poor children in my community,” she related.

Resamee learned to embrace and enjoy the good times and to work on the bad things, allowing her to stay positive despite the hardships in life. In fact, from elementary up to high school, she constantly received awards and honours. Entering college was the point in her life where she decided to encourage children to become who they want to be.

Resamee also became motivated to take part in improving the condition of their community in Sarangani. “I saw the challenges in our community. Most of the families are not educated so they usually end up working as farmers or fishermen, earning very little income. But I dream to break the cycle of poverty in my community. I believe education is the key,” she explained.

Her passion to uplift the children in their village deepened when she started working as a public school teacher. “I began to see the sad reality of how deprived of opportunities public schools are. Aside from the usual issues — congestion, lack of classrooms, equipment, and teachers — the quality of public school education is insufficient and uncompetitive,” she said. “Unfortunately, dropout rates in the elementary level continue to increase.”

This situation pushed Resamee to trek miles to visit her students’ families and to ask the support of the parents in moulding the future of their children. “I am blessed because God gave me sheer enthusiasm to teach and patience to endure the challenges of being a teacher.”

Resamee continues to tell her students that education is important in achieving their dreams. “I continuously educate myself and show my students the liberating power of education. Right now, I am trying to finish my graduate studies in education so that I’ll become the best educator for the poor kids in our community.”

This burning desire of Resamee to change the lives of her students is sustained by the love she allotted for them. “I consider myself as their mom and friend too. I listen to their stories—happy or sad. I cry and laugh with them. I extend my blessings to them. I also dream with them.”

“I’m proud of being a public school teacher. I’m fulfilled creating miracles to the lives of the children. I’m grateful that I’m making a difference in their lives.”