Rhea's Extraordinary Story
Turning Her Struggles Into A Passion to Give Back
Rhea grew up as the eldest of 13 children in the Philippines. Since her mother spent every day working, Rhea cared for all of her siblings from the age of 9 on. Her parents both worked for meager salaries, and if they ever missed a day of work, it could mean that Rhea and her siblings would have no food the following day.
Forced to Put Her Dreams Aside
Tending to 12 siblings left Rhea no time to go to school. Most of her life, Rhea was forced to put her dreams aside and focus on providing for her family. Rhea’s passion for education was not lost in those years: she focused on getting her siblings to school, and in fact, one of them has recently gone to college. Rhea is determined to give her siblings the opportunities she did not have when she was young.
Even though she is the primary provider for her family, Rhea is making her education a priority. For years, she has wanted to earn a degree in guidance counseling so she can help children who struggle like she and her siblings have. Rhea has taken her struggles and turned them into a passion to give back the community.
She wants to focus on extremely vulnerable children who live on the streets without access to education, safe food, or water. Rhea has already come so far with her goal, creating a program to help keep children off the streets and in school. “I have always wanted to do something toward alleviating poverty in my country.”
She knows that to achieve success and fulfill her potential, she has to finish college, which she is doing with help from the Soroptimist Live Your Dream Awards.
The Live Your Dream Awards will enable me to finally complete my college education, which in turn would help me reach my goals of doing more for the street children I am helping.
There is no doubt she will use her education to propel others to live their dreams as well.