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Efren Penaflorida, Jr.: CNN Hero of the Year

Updated on March 5, 2012
Teacher Efren Penaflorida, Jr.
Teacher Efren Penaflorida, Jr.
Kuya Ef during one of his weekend routine of volunteerism
Kuya Ef during one of his weekend routine of volunteerism

The pushcart educator


The pushcart educator took the helm as the 2009 CNN Hero of the Year. The Filipino educator Efren Penaflorida, Jr. brought home the honor to be chosen among the ten candidates from different countries. The effort of this teacher to educate the street children in his hometown Cavite made waves in other parts of the world. The Cable News Network (CNN) took notice of the effort and nominated Penaflorida as one of the ten finalists this year.

Who is Efren Penaflorida?

Only 28 years old, Efren Penaflorida formed the Dynamic Teen Company (DTC) along with his classmates with the purpose of helping street children more than a decade ago.  Finishing his college education as teacher, he usually pushes his unique classroom “Kariton Klassrum” or pushcart classroom to the main streets of Cavity City to help educate street children who cannot afford to attend a regular class in elementary level.

The eagerness of Efren or Kuya Ef as he is fondly called by the children he is helping along with his growing number of volunteers took the world to notice the kind of extending education to the masses or those who cannot afford it.

Many youngsters are all praises about the help they are receiving from these dynamic teens, the basic education they desperately need: to read and write.

The bullying that Efren Penaflorida experienced when he was still a youngster from his peers made him a stronger person. It is his stepping stone to extend the knowledge he gained to the less fortunate in his community.

2009 CNN Hero

Not only the online votes and comments on his DTC website that made him both a Filipino and CNN Hero of 2009 as well, but because of the dedication and perseverance he had shown to his work to help the needy, and that is the children who thirst for education.

Literacy is still what the world needs. We can eradicate illiteracy if we will follow the example of Efren Penaflorida. He’s not only representing the Philippines but the world itself. Education is just halfway in this generation. Many people in different parts of the world still crave for knowledge and information. 

We, the fortunate ones to have college degrees and sufficient education can be an instrument to extend help to illiterate one in our community.

From the Hub Pages community, we salute you, Efren Penaflorida, CNN Hero of the Year 2009!


Pinas Watch congrats Efren Penaflorida

A hubber's opinion regarding Efren Penaflorida

It's been three years since this pushcart educator, Efren Penaflorida, created a worldwide buzz regarding modern-day heroism.

This 2012, as I reviewed this hub and news regarding the man, part of his winning prize, being the 2009 CNN Hero of the Year, went to the construction of the building geared towards his vision to have a center for the street children who are under his tutelage and his volunteers at the Dynamic Teen Company (DTC)

News about Efren may be superseded by recent political news here in the Philippines or the impeachment trial bruhaha, but his vision of sharing his ideals to those less-fortunate children in Cavite will never be forgotten by people who believe in his cause or advocacy.

(With personal writing and opinion from travel_man1971 aka Ireno A. Alcala)

Praises on CNN

Cable News Network (CNN) is foremost the baby of tycoon Ted Turner, who also owns lots of movie and production companies, aside from vast properties.

Through CNN, the world gets smaller as news all over the continents are gathered by vigilant and factual journalists who brave the perils of actual events.

An interesting segment, iReport, is now being cloned by local television stations here in the Philippines as media moguls also incorporate firsthand information from concerned citizens who first saw interesting events happening all over the country.

Cable News Network (CNN)


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    • travel_man1971 profile imageAUTHOR

      Ireno Alcala 

      6 years ago from Bicol, Philippines

      @the girls: Thanks, kabayan, for that vote of confidence. :D

    • travel_man1971 profile imageAUTHOR

      Ireno Alcala 

      6 years ago from Bicol, Philippines

      @joy: Thanks for the very important appeal you extended on this hub.

      I'm sure Filipinos out there whose advocacy is to help are going to heed your call.

    • the girls profile image

      Theresa Ventu 

      6 years ago from Los Angeles, California

      Good job kabayan! Voted up!

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      To all the Filipinos at home and abroad, be like brother Efren Penaflorida,you don't have to be in CNN to help the unfortunate not rob the a real person to your own kapatiran kahit saan!! God bless you Efren my hero brother. Go and continue doing what you are doing, I will be part of you in my prayer.

    • travel_man1971 profile imageAUTHOR

      Ireno Alcala 

      7 years ago from Bicol, Philippines

      @ArcticFox: Pardon me for this late reply on your comment, kabayan. I'm as proud like you, too, with regards to Efren's achievements in educating poor children in his areas.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      He's truly a Hero! I'm proud to be a Filipino.

    • travel_man1971 profile imageAUTHOR

      Ireno Alcala 

      9 years ago from Bicol, Philippines

      Thanks to you, Gen. H. You've done a great tribute, too, to 2009 CNN Hero of the Year Efren Penaflorida, Jr. He's just as humble as he is when he started his Kariton Klasrum. Now, his very memorable message reverberates in my ear, that "in every person, there's a hero within, waiting to be unleashed."

    • GeneralHowitzer profile image

      Gener Geminiano 

      9 years ago from Land of Salt, Philippines

      Hehehe just visited it Great tribute...


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