Super Dads come in all different forms.

Parenting can be difficult, but at the end of the day, the No. 1 thing any parent needs to do a good job is to love and support. Everything else is extra. That means, even if a mother or father doesn’t make a ton of money or give their kids all the bells and whistles, they can still be a successful parent.

That’s why one story of a father who sometimes couldn’t put food on the table but still supported his daughter so that she could graduate from college is resonating with so many people.

A Man Does His Best

man collecting garbage

A 51-year-old father named Tatay Cristito Quimado doesn’t have much in life, but he has a family, and to him, that is everything. The Filipino garbage collector made headlines after a GMA News article highlighted just how much he loves his family.

In the story, the father-of-four explained how he wakes up at 3 a.m. every day in order to get to work at 4 a.m. From there he collects garbage and risks his health due to exposure to various hazards.

It’s not the most glamorous job, but it’s a job, and he does it because he — like so many other parents — wants a better life for his kids. He wants them to finish their studies, and he will do whatever it takes to support them in that goal.

“It’s difficult because I have many children. But even though it’s hard, I can handle it. Sometimes we have nothing to eat,” he told the outlet.

A Proud Family

Quimado’s dream came true in April 2018 when his daughter, Jenny Rose Quimado, graduated college with a Bachelor of Science degree in Nutrition and Food Technology. It has been a long road, but the dad said he is proud of his daughter. Jenny is also proud of how hard her father has worked in order to get her to this position.

“Sometimes, he comes home empty-handed, but I thank God that he is my father because his work is honorable. He is not doing anything illegal,” she said.

What sticks most with Quimado is that, even though some kids might be ashamed of having a garbage collector as a father, Jenny is proud of his work and knows that hard work is hard work. She also knows what you do for a living doesn’t necessarily define you.

“When people ask, ‘What does your father do?’ she answers, ‘Garbage collector!’ she is not shy,” Quimado added.

A Dream for the Next Generation

Now that Jenny has graduated college, she wants to start working in order to provide for her siblings and for her father. She wants to be able to take him to nice restaurants and buy him nice clothes.

She also wants to set the tone for her siblings, and wants to help her family by putting her salary towards putting them through school, too.

“I want to be the one to work so I can educate my siblings,” she added.

The family’s story was a huge hit, and before they knew it, others around the world wanted to help them out, too. Quimado’s wife was offered a job at a sari store, and others donated money and gifts to help give them a nice Christmas.

That generosity isn’t slowing Quimado down from working as hard as he can to provide though. “For fathers like me, it is our obligation to send our children to school,” he explained in a follow-up GMA News article. “I hope for all of our children.”

Following Your Dreams

This story is so sweet because it highlights the importance of family and love. But it also exemplifies the importance of following your dreams, even when things get hard.

Getting up that early and collecting other people’s garbage isn’t easy. It’s a hard and demanding gig that offers very low rewards. Yet Quimado does it because he knows it’s for a good cause: realizing his dream of his children graduating from college.

It’s a reminder to all of us that when things get hard, don’t give up. Remember your purpose, set goals for yourself, and when life gives you a challenge face it head-on. So long as you have loved ones who will support you along the way, you’re going to be all right.