I grew up in the Philippines in a family of five, and up until I was the age of 6, we had a very comfortable life. Then, my mum’s business was targeted by an organized crime syndicate and around the same time, my papa made the decision to quit his high-salary job. He learned there was fraud going on in the business and he didn't want to be a part of it. My papa always protected his integrity and the integrity of our family's name.
We lost all our material possessions and money overnight – we went from living in a big house with 5 housekeepers and a driver, to living in a tiny two-bedroom dilapidated house with rat holes and cockroaches. Riches to Rags… the untold (but much more common) story.
For the rest of my childhood, my family struggled to make ends meet. When I was in primary school, my parents told me that I needed to study really hard because if I was smart, I'd be able to continue my education through scholarship. I had two older siblings, and the reality was my parents couldn't afford to send us all to paid education. Education is a privilege in the Philippines.
As time went on, things slightly improved for us financially – my mum was a school teacher and my dad owned a start-up business. However, our life was still volatile – we were in a situation where every hard blow of life knocked us down. We just always made the conscious decision to get back up and keep fighting, have faith that it would get better, and see the glass half full rather than half empty.
There's a reason why the Philippines produces the best boxers in the world... we have gri!
So here I am, toughened by life situations and moulded within the values my parents uphold — resilience, integrity and faith.
It’s because of my journey in life that I take pride in working for Micro Insurance Company. I feel grateful to have a career doing what I love as a Finance Director and managing a business that aims to close the uninsured gap globally. I have experienced and seen enough to understand the profound need to educate people about the importance of insurance, and the need for affordable insurance that is designed for the day-to-day struggles and fears of people. That’s what gets me out of bed every morning – the excitement for MIC to grow and reach as many people as possible.
I count my blessings everyday. I am in a good place in my life and I have my parents to thank for always leading by example. They have overcome so much adversity in their life through faith, extreme hard work, and always keeping their values intact. They taught me that there is a solution to every problem and that I can always stand for what’s right, even in difficult situations. They are the definition of mental and emotional strength – like gold, which even after being put through fire, still comes out as gold. It’s my dream to make them proud and for my own children to feel the same way about me.
I hope to anyone who reads my story it inspires them to never ever give up and of course... get insurance!