74-Year-Old Woman Goes Diving Everyday To Fish For Coins So That She Can Feed Her Family
She risks it all everyday to provide for her family.
The Badjao people in the southern Philippines are an ethnic group known for their sea lifestyle. and this elderly woman is a perfect example of that.
With the sea and weather permitting, 74-year-old Maria Tequillo goes to a port nearby her home to scavenge for coins that are thrown overboard by passengers. The tourists throw coins in because they genuinely want to see the natives dive or because they are taking pity on those panhandling.
Many of the Badjao people spend their time diving for money, and the way they live over the water in shacks has helped them to become better swimmers and more accustomed to the sometimes unruly sea.
Tequillo is probably one of the oldest still diving at this port, and although she may be too old for this “job,” , she explains that her family relies desperately on this money.
Her husband no longer dives with her as he used to, but on the days that the sea is too rough and Maria can’t go out, he goes to beg on the streets.
Sadly, the Badjao people are plagued by extreme poverty, and the shacks they live in above the water are connected by thin planks of wood.
Maria’s dedication to her family is inspiring, albeit a little sad because she should be retired, but she won’t let anything get in the way of providing for her family.