From despair to triumph

How faith, determination, and Cebuana Lhuillier’s support transformed young learner's life
From despair to triumph
Contributed photo

“'Take delight in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart.” Psalm 37:4 is a very popular and powerful verse in the Holy Bible. But this has never been more true to the life story of one former Cebuana Lhuillier Foundation Inc."- Alternative Learning Systems learner.

Cebuana Lhuillier, the country’s leading provider of financial services, through the Cebuana Lhuillier Foundation Inc., supports this initiative since 2013, advocating for learning and firmly believing in the importance of educating the nation's future — the youth. Through their support, they contribute to the empowerment of individuals and the overall development of the community by ensuring that more Filipinos have access to quality education.

Kris Ian Indic Villamor’s journey is a testament to the power of determination and the unyielding human spirit. Kris grew up in Tolosa, Leyte — a small town with limited opportunities, far from the bustling city life. In a family of ten siblings, with a farmer father and a housewife mother, life was fraught with challenges. Yet, Kris always held onto the belief that with determination, nothing is impossible.

The turning point came in 2013 when Super Typhoon Yolanda ravaged their town, leaving a path of destruction and despair. Amid the chaos, Kris found a renewed sense of purpose and realized the transformative power of education. Despite not having completed high school traditionally, Kris passed the Accreditation and Equivalency Test (A&E) and took a bold step by enrolling in Visayas State University-Tolosa to pursue a Bachelor of Elementary Education in June 2014.

“Nagpapasalamat po ako sa mga taong sumusuporta sa ALS ng gobyerno katulad ng at lalong lalo na sa Cebuana Lhuillier sa kanilang Cebuana Lhuillier Foundation Inc. Napakalaking tulong po ng supporta nila sa ALS. Mula sa mga gamit sa pag-aaral, sa mga dagdag na modules na maaring magamit sa buhay kahit sa labas ng eskwela, napakadali pong bumitaw at mawalan nalang ng pag asa, pero dahil po sa mga katulad ng Cebuana Lhuillier, nakakita po ako ng pag-asa sa buhay. Salamat po sa Panginoon at sa Cebuana Lhuillier Foundation Inc. sa pag mulat sa akin na kaya ko kahit ano ang hamon sa harap dahil hindi nila ako iniwan hanggang sa makatapos po ako. Salamat Ka Cebuana,” adds Kris.

College life was a crucible of trials and triumphs. Kris faced numerous challenges, but each obstacle only strengthened his resolve. Failures were not setbacks but lessons that taught resilience and the importance of perseverance. In September 2018, Kris took the Licensure Examination for Teachers (LET) but did not pass. Rather than succumbing to disappointment, Kris used this experience as motivation to strive harder. By March 2019, his unwavering determination paid off when he successfully passed the LET, a moment of immense joy and pride for him and his family.

Upon graduating in October 2018, Kris dedicated himself to public service, becoming a Barangay Secretary for almost three years. This role was demanding and often overwhelming, but it was also deeply fulfilling. During the pandemic, the isolation brought about a profound realization of the importance of family and faith.

In 2021, life took another unexpected turn. A colleague introduced Kris to the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology. Against the odds, Kris was selected to take the oath as Jail Officer I. This role, demanding and critical, allowed him to serve his fellow Filipinos who had been deprived of liberty.

Here, Kris’s dedication to safety, security, and the rehabilitation of inmates was put to the test. He worked tirelessly to provide them with education, vocational training, and essential support, preparing them for a better future upon release.

Kris’s journey is a powerful reminder that no challenge is insurmountable with faith, determination, and the support of loved ones. He is just one of the many success stories of Cebuana Lhuillier Foundation Inc.’s support to the ALS Program. His story is an inspiring narrative of overcoming adversity and a testament to the belief that with unwavering resolve, we can achieve our heart's desires.

"In championing education through our steadfast support of the ALS program, we pave the way for every individual to realize their potential and contribute meaningfully to society. Learning isn't just a pathway to personal growth; it's the cornerstone of empowerment and progress for generations to come," says Cebuana Lhuillier’s President and CEO Jean Henri Lhuillier.

Cebuana Lhuillier Foundation's learning advocacy shines through its steadfast support of the Philippine government's ALS program. Committed to the belief that education is a powerful catalyst for change, the foundation provides essential resources, scholarships, and various forms of support to out-of-school youth, adults, and marginalized groups. By backing the ALS program, Cebuana Lhuillier empowers individuals to overcome educational barriers, fostering a brighter future for the nation's youth and contributing significantly to community development and social upliftment. PR

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