By Ana Theresa Williams,BSN,RN
Seeing persons progress from their condition is very encouraging for everyone, especially for their family. And achieving excellence in studies is another thing that makes the whole world proud of you. Such person is truly worth emulating, which encourages all families to keep the faith in Jesus Christ and trust His mighty and incredible ways.
Brina Kei Masangkay Maxino was diagnosed with Down Syndrome when she was still a newborn, or nine days old to be exact. Her parents were informed by her doctor that she could die early because of her severe condition. Then at age 10, a psychologist told her parents that due to Brina’s serious intellectual disability, she cannot finish her studies in grade school. But the severe condition of this young lady didn’t stop her from achieving her ambition and dream.
Brina has completely proven to all who discouraged her and her family that she can strive hard and make it happen. Two months ago, she graduated with a four-year degree in Bachelor of Arts, Major in History at age 20.
But before she graduated in college, she also earned her one-year Certificate in General Clerical Services at age 17 and earned another two-year Certificate in Associate in Arts at age 18.
In regular High School, she finished her studies with flying colors and graduated as Class Valedictorian at age 16. If not with hard work, her family and relatives, who would believe in her, she certainly would not have made her dreams come true.
What’s more about Brina? She has been the Global Youth Ambassador for Special Olympics Philippines representing the Asia Pacific Region and co-chair of the 2015 Globe Youth Activation Summit in Los Angeles, California.
Thus, she encouraged all the parents, relatives, teachers, therapists and doctors of Persons With Disability (PWD), and those with intellectual disability like her to continue to believe in them and told them to help people with Down Syndrome with their conditions. “We also deserve the chance to live the best lives that we could,” she said.
Like anybody else, this young lady is certainly one promising professional who desires to become a teacher and own her own school someday. “I wanted to become a teacher someday to help educate people who have a similar condition like me,” she said.
This known personality had been previously invited by former US President Barack Obama at the White House, and was interviewed by a television network, national newspaper and some bloggers and magazine writers. Her life has also been often busy in several speaking engagements where she has been invited as one guest speaker.
Pediatric Developmental and Behavioral Specialist Ferriza Maria Amparo Isaguirre,MD said it is uncommon for Down Syndrome to achieve a high level of education skills, but there are individuals who do like Brina. “And so far in Davao City, there’s no one yet who has such great achievement in life despite having Down Syndrome,” she said.
As what the famous line of Brina, “Let’s make it happen!”