Faces of Cebu

FACES OF CEBU: Jhon Dale Perez, 16, student


This 16-year-old honor student from Cebu CIty is going the extra mile just so he could prepare for the new normal in learning. CDN Digital photo | Brian J. Ochoa


16-year-old Jhon Dale Perez, an honor student from Cebu City, carries a sack of black soil. which is used for gardening, to a pickup truck. Perez is going the extra mile just so he could prepare for the new normal in learning. CDN Digital photo | Brian J. Ochoa

CEBU CITY, Philippines—How far will you go to pursue your dreams to finish school?

This incoming tenth grader from Barangay Cadahuan in Talamban, Cebu City is willing to go the extra mile just to raise the needed funds to prepare him for the new normal in learning.

What does he do? He collects sacks of black soil good for gardening and sells it for P100 per sack.

Yup! 16-year-old Jhon Dale Perez, an honor student, is willing to do that just so he could purchase the gadgets needed to get him by this school year, which is made extraordinary due to the threat of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

This academic year, learning is expected to be done virtually to prevent the spread of COVID-19 among students, teachers and other school staff.

Perez lives with his grandmother, who, like him, isn’t allowed to leave the house due to the quarantine status in Cebu City. This means he can’t have the free modules given in his school.

“Mao nalang ni akong na huna-huna-an, kay para naa koy magamit para sa akong school ug para namo sa akong lola sad,” he added.

(This is the only thing I can think of so I could have things I can use for school and also for my grandmother.)

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But after sharing his dilemma online, netizens came overflowing with help to support this honor student’s dream to finish school.

Within just a few hours, he received a laptop, a used cellphone, money, and some grocery items from netizens.

“Dako kay kog pasalamat, kay bisan naa nakoy magamit naa gyud gihapy mo palit, ug naa sad ni hatag og scholarship nako,” he added.

(I am grateful because even if I already have the things I need, people still come to buy black soil and there was also someone who gave me a scholarship.)

Once again, the power of social media has helped one deserving student get what he needs. But it couldn’t have also been noticed if not for the determination of the kid to continue his studies.

Now, Perez can focus on this new normal in learning and take a step closer to fulfilling his dream to finish school and help his grandmother have a better life. /bmjo

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