Written by Frederick Deserva, Operation Blessing Foundation Philippines

Our Back-to-School Scholar Mary Barbette Reyes graduated this year with a degree in Civil Engineering from Eastern Samar State University.

Back-to-School scholar

Mary Barbette poses with her mother after the graduation.

When we met Mary Barbette 3 years ago, we have learned that Mary Barbette had to stop schooling to help her single mother to provide for their daily needs. Mary Barbette has 4 other siblings, 2 of which already had their own family.

Before the Super Typhoon Yolanda, the young lady’s mother had managed to put up a mini sari-sari store, a fruit stand, and a rice cake business. But these were washed out and they had to start all over again.

Back-to-School scholar

“We didn’t let this problem affect our lives, rather we hoped for the grace of God, that God has a better plan for our lives. This encouraged me to pursue my studies,” a positive Mary Barbette said.

Seeing her determination to finish her studies, her mother asked their church pastor for help in looking for a scholarship for her daughter.

While waiting, Mary Barbette prayed hard and continue helping her mother in their business.

Back-to-School scholar

One day, she realized her prayers were answered when Operation Blessing Philippines contacted her and told her of the Back-to-School Program.

“I am very much grateful to Operation Blessing because it helped me to focus on my studies, trust in the Lord and never worry on what we do not have,” Mary Barbette shared.