Making ends meet is nearly impossible without a job. Even those with jobs can find themselves struggling to make ends meet as cheques are delayed, or altogether missing.

Bruno Rafael Paiva found himself in a tough spot. He worked as a substitute teacher at a Brazillan high school and had been filling in for someone on maternity leave. Due to some issues with paperwork, his name had not been added to the school’s payroll.

As a result, he did not receive any salary for the two and a half months he worked there. Soon, he was broke and had to resort to living and sleeping at school.

When his students found out, they decided to help

When Bruno’s students discovered the reality of his condition, they decided to to something to help their teacher out.

This month when I saw that I was not going to receive [my salary] after a month and a half of work, I saw everything going black, I sank into depression. [I was] worried and lost [not] knowing how to pay the bills and help my family that is changing and with many of the barriers of life.

Bruno Rafael Paiva on Facebook

His student had secretly began raising money when they heard about the payment issues he experienced. They even held a raffle at school to raise cash! Altogether, they raised $400!

Bruno will never forget their kindness

The students presented him with the money in class. In a video, Paiva goes to his desk and notices a small box on the table. When he opens it, he is stunned and silent for a moment.

“This cannot be. How can you do this?” Paiva said.

Afterwards, Paiva wrote, “I have many rooms that I have loved in my heart to be a teacher, but no room has ever shown such love, help and affection for my teacher’s work as the 1st # Buildings did today. They are students like me, who still make me believe in the education of the country, believe in the love of others, in the compassion of putting oneself in the place of others, and believe mainly in the respect and love of the student towards the Professor of his school.”

Paiva is honored that his students represent the future he believes in. Their generosity and empathy certainly remind us that we can make a difference in someone’s life, no matter our age or situations.

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