Filipino kid from the streets turns into inspiration
November 2, 2012
When Cris Valdez of the Philippines was born into his family, he was not born into the best conditions and his parents were not thrilled. They called him bad luck because they were unable to sell him when he was a baby. Now, at 13, Valdez has been honored with the International Children's Peace Prize for his work helping other kids in his country that have also run into some bad luck, according to AFP.
"I help because I see myself in children who roam and live on the streets," Valdez told the news outlet during one of his weekend community outreach programs. "Some good-hearted people showed me love and changed my life, and I am just paying it forward."
Harnin Manalaysay, the head of a local Christian youth charity, rescued Valdez after finding him digging for scraps in the garbage dump that he lived next to.
"I found him sleeping on a curbside covered in flies. He was very dirty and being kicked by passers by," Manalaysay told the news source.
Manalaysay eventually became Valdez's legal guardian, and watched the young boy continue to do things for his community. For instance, when Valdez was 6 he started teaching kids about basic hygiene and for his 7th birthday he asked to give kids what he had such as toys, candies and rubber slippers. This turned into a yearly tradition and a charity, which has helped over 10,000 kids in the past six years, the media outlet reports.
Now, Valdez has hopes of eventually being a doctor and taking his charity work to a whole other level.
"I'm studying hard because I want to be a doctor... I want to help more children, not only in the Philippines, but also in other countries," he told AFP.