Bright homeless boy receives scholarship program

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Daniel Cabrera his lessons
Daniel Cabrera his lessons [by Joyce Gilos Torrefranca via Facebook]

Nine-year-old Daniel Cabrera, the boy whose photo showing him studying his lessons at night outside a fast food outlet, has just received a scholarship and other school and living supplies from around the world after the photo went viral on social media.

The scholarship came from the fast food outlet McDonalds whose store light has been illuminating Cabrera’s homework studies. The scholarship will cover the boy’s needs until he finishes his K to 12 basic education, according to Marie Angeles of the McDonalds Charities.

A crowd funding site has also been set up by Bayanihan Project to collect donations on behalf of Cabrera who has said he wishes to continue his studies to become a policeman or doctor.

Livelihood assistance is also being offered to the family by government and private individuals.

The original Facebook photo post by Cebu Doctors University student Joyce Gillos Torrefranca was accompanied by the words, “I got inspired by a kid.” The picture shows the Grade 3 elementary student in Mandaue City crouched before a wooden bench which served as a study table. The faint light from a nearby McDonalds outlet illuminated his homework.

The Facebook post was shared in various languages including German, Portuguese, and Spanish with comments on the boy’s perservance.

Cabrera, his mother, and 7-year-old sibling Gabriel sleep in a space beside the food stall where the mother works. Media interviews revealed the Cabreras have been homeless after their house burnt down.

Torrefranca told Rappler about her own inspiration for posting the photo, “As a student, it gave me an inspiration to work harder. I’m fortunate my parents were able to send me to school. I seldom go to coffee shops to study, but this kid just hit me. You really don’t need much, you just have to be determined and focused on the things that you want to achieve.”

Torrefranca in a follow up post says she did not expect the difference that her photo would make in the life of the boy and hopes the inspiration will keep everyone motivated.

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