Remy Mendez, a dedicated mother living in poverty in the Philippines, struggled to provide for her daughter Amina. Amina’s biggest dream was to go to school, but Remy and her husband couldn’t afford to educate Amina and her sister. But with the help of an Opportunity International loan, Remy built a business and transformed her family’s future. And with the additional support of a special scholarship, Amina was able to complete her university education in the United States.
Today, Amina is a college graduate who has returned to the Philippines to serve others living in poverty by working for Opportunity International. In October, Remy and Amina shared their inspiring story at the 2014 Opportunity International Summit.
This Thanksgiving, read their words of thanks to all Opportunity supporters – and watch their whole message online.
On behalf of all of Opportunity’s clients and staff around the world, thank you for your support. We are forever grateful for you.
Amina: I have been a daughter of a client, and now I am an implementer on the ground. And it’s a great opportunity to be here looking at it from the other side. I guess the most amazing thing about our experience is that you [supporters] have never met our clients. You are helping people you’ve never seen before. You don’t know my mom, but you’ve opened your hearts for her. That shows the kind of grace that’s sometimes hard to understand when you’re poor. And that grace translates to others. When poor people like my mom and myself see that we are able to change our destiny, we start thinking, maybe other people can do it too.
The loan helped my mom. It helped me. It is going to help generations of people after me. It helped the neighbors in her community. So it’s not just momentum, it’s an explosion of momentum – one life touching another. You have no idea how many lives you are touching and inspiring directly and indirectly, and I would like to thank you for that.
It’s great to see the faces of the people who have invested so much, and I want to be able to say to you that you are creating change and you are creating impact. And what you are doing here matters. Not just to the families who are receiving the loans, but to their children, and the children after that who may never know the name of Opportunity International because they won’t be poor anymore and they won’t be needing that loan.
Remy: I would like to thank Opportunity International for supporting us and giving us a chance – giving a chance to poor people like us. We have the will to go [escape] from poverty, and Opportunity International gave us that chance. So thank you. On behalf of all Filipino clients, thank you very much. Thank you for making Amina’s dream possible.