A Photograph Of A Homeless Filipino Boy Studying Outside McDonald’s Got Viral, Received Scholarship
Daniel Cabrera, a 9 year old homeless boy in the Philippines, was seen and photographed by a college student doing his homework and studying on the pavement at night outside the McDonald’s store. The faint light coming from the store helped him see his notes and allowed him to do his homework.
He used a wooden stool placed close to the McDonald’s window as his table to catch the light and then, sat on his feet while writing his homework. The photograph was posted on Facebook and went viral on the internet.
The photograph was taken by Joyce Torrefranca, a 20 year old medical technology student. A caption, “I got inspired by a kid” was placed on the image. The Facebook post was shared 7,000 times across social networking sites until a local television got hold of it. With a little twist of fate, Daniel’s dream is to become a policeman someday!
The local police also contributed groceries for the family. The 42 year old mother of Daniel, Ms. Espinosa, works as a grocery store employee and a domestic helper earning only about P80 pesos a day. After working at the grocery store, she sells cigarettes and candies on the streets. You will find her walking along the streets of Mandaue in Cebu selling cigarettes and candies.
Their house was destroyed by fire years ago, so right now, herself and her three youngest children that include Daniel, live in the mini-grocery store. The grocery store is situated near one of the McDonald’s outlet where Daniel used to sit and study.
A local politician, Samuel Pagdilao, also got hold of the shared photograph and awarded the boy an unspecified amount as a scholarship grant. Samuel Pagdilao is a member of the Anti-Crime and Terrorism, but the scholarship grant was awarded through the Community Involvement & Support (ACT-CIS) party.
Her mother described Daniel as a very determined child focused on getting an education and becoming a policeman someday. At his young age, he insisted going to school even without lunch. He would always tell her, “Mama, I don’t want to stay poor. I want to reach my dreams.”
What came out of the Facebook post was a good one. Filipinos showed some community spirit this time. In addition to the scholarship grant that guarantees his education through college, the local church and government social welfare also gave some aid. Daniel received cash, school supplies, school uniforms and a reading lamp.
His story became a national story of a poor boy who had difficulty studying because they do not have electricity. The Facebook post was shared around the world in multiple languages. Those who got the share was totally touched by his perseverance and determination.
While other street kids beg for food and money, Daniel was trying to catch a glimpse of his notes studying from the little amount of light that he gets from the McDonald’s store window. Hard work and determination do pay off!
The reunion of Joyce and Daniel was featured in a McDonald’s commercial entitled, “The Boy Who Loves To Study.” Learn more about our good news stories.
McDonald’s video, “The Boy Who Loves To Study”