Published Wed, Aug 22, 18. Written by .
A roller coaster of emotions flooded Bohol Deaf Academy during the graduation day on the 28th of March, 2018. Francis Jake, one of the the 16 graduates, could hardly believe he had finished high school after all the trials and challenges he went through. His memory flashed back to the time when his mother was sobbing in front of him when she wanted to give up on him because of his bad behavior.
He remembered being kicked out of school for one year because of violating dorm policies. He worked as a laborer for that year to feed himself and help provide for his older deaf sister’s school allowance. It was then he realized he should finish his studies, find a better job, and be a good model to his younger siblings, especially his little sister who is also deaf.
Francis Jake’s recognition of his past mistakes led him to accept Jesus in his heart. He realized that our God of grace often gives us chances to be better even after we fall. With a fighting spirit, Francis Jake came to the IDEA office and humbly asked for a second chance to return to IDEA’s high school, Bohol Deaf Academy. He continued his studies and proved he was worth a second chance. He excelled in sports and did very well in his vocational classes especially in welding, carpentry, and cooking.
When he reached 10th grade, he had his on the job training as an assistant cook at the IDEA Cafe & Pension House in Jagna, his hometown. He did so well in his training and left a good impression with the manager that he was hired full time at the same restaurant right after graduation.
Francis Jake is a great asset to his family as he can now contribute financially to them. He and his family are indeed grateful for the wonderful opportunities IDEA is providing to the deaf like him. “I have so much to thank IDEA for, especially the second chance they gave me. I’ve learned the hard lessons in life that made me who I am now.” he expressed. Without education, Francis Jake could have been just a deaf street kid getting into trouble with the law. Instead, he is now a shining example to younger deaf kids about the importance of making the right choices and allowing Jesus to be his compass in life.