Efren Penaflorida: One is not too poor to help others

I got invited at Reedley International School to attend a talk featuring 2009 CNN Hero of the Year Efren Penaflorida. The talk was actually directed towards the 1st year high school students of that school, but oldies, the press and bloggers like me were also present to cover and perhaps get some inspiration from Kuya Ef.

I've heard him talk on TV, and honestly I've also saw the same presentation he gave. But, there are people that are simply wired to inspire. Efren is blessed to be one. When his honest, humble voice utters words of inspiration, you are moved to do something significant.
Do rich kids care?

I maybe wrong (it was my first time to have actually known and been to Reedley), but being an international school, it is basically a school for rich kids. Truthfully, I've seen expat kids and from the looks of it, most are kids of well-to-do parents. One common notion with rich kids is that they don't care about what's happening around them. They are too well-provided to care about others.

Kuya Ef's presentation, however, provided a platform for these kids to dream big dreams, to make a difference and to help others.

"One is not too poor to help others. One is not to young to make a difference. One is not too ordinary to be a hero."

The kids get it. After the talk, they actually prepared used story books to help Kuya Ef's Kariton library.

Not everything is a success

He presented 2 success stories. Both kids came from gangs, one is even a member of the Akyat-bahay Gang. They are now members of his team and a volunteer. One kid, at the age of 7, even have his own movement that helps children like him!

But he admitted that it's not all success stories. In fact, he said they have experienced a lot of failures with other kids.

This to me is one a very important fact of life that even we grown ups need to remember. We see millionaires, heroes, successful people. But we don't see their failures in the past. Failures that propel them to give their best and to continue pursuing their goals. And if we struggle with failures, we think that it's the end of the road when these failures are part of the puzzle, the whole picture of how we can become in the future.

Carlo Ople invited me to this event. Thanks, dude!