Insurer makes child’s Olympic dream come trueBy Michelle V. Remo
Philippine Daily Inquirer
Joed is counting the days.
The 15-year-old lean boy can’t help but get excited about his flight to London at the end of the month to watch the Olympics.
He is one of the few chosen youngsters chosen by the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) and the British Council to go to London for a two-week stay to learn more about sports by watching the games and attending short classes.
“I am happy to be chosen to go to London,” says John Edgard Reyes, or Joed, a high school student from Marcelo H. del Pillar High School in Malolos, Bulacan.
He was named champion in badminton and most outstanding athlete during the recently concluded “Batang Pinoy” sports competitions organized by the PSC.
Joed tells Sunday Biz that watching the Olympics will be a dream-come-true moment for him. He says he hopes to someday represent the Philippines in the world’s most prestigious sports competition.
In his trip to London, Joed will be joined by a few other Filipino youngsters who excel in other sports. He says he is likewise excited about the opportunity to meet new friends and mingle with other youngsters who have the same goal as his.
Joed says he is thankful for the opportunity given to him by the PSC and the British Council, as well as to his other sponsors to the two-week trip led by insurance firm Pru Life UK.
The opportunity to watch the Olympics helps make his dream of becoming a member of the Philippine team attainable.
Antonio Manuel de Rosas, president and chief executive officer of Pru Life, says sponsoring the two-week trip of Joed is a worthwhile activity for the UK-based insurance firm.
“Insurance is a business related to life and health. Sponsoring Joed and promoting sports among the youth are, therefore, in line with the principles that our company espouses,” De Rosas tells Sunday Biz.
“It is the company’s first time to sponsor an athlete, and we find it appropriate to give our support,” De Rosas says.
He says it is an honor for Pru Life to support a youngster in his quest to be a world-class athlete and possibly bring pride to the country a few years from now.
Joed, who trains four times a week on three hour durations would do well in future competitions he plans to join. He says he has learned the value of hard work and discipline in sports.
He does not complain about having to skip regular teenager activities. Joed says the fulfillment he gets in engaging in sports, in interacting with other young athletes, and in working for his dream are worth giving up the life of an average teenager.
Joed plans to compete in World Youth Championship in China in 2014. He aims to bring home a medal and go another step closer to becoming the Philippines’ badminton representative to the Olympics.
“We wish him the best. Pru life is pleased to see a youngster like him pursue a big dream in sports,” De Rosas says.
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