Woman with Down Syndrome defies all odds, becomes a teacher and speaker

MANILA, Philippines - An inspiring woman with Down Syndrome shares her journey as she defies all odds and achieves her dreams.

Meet Brina Kei Maxino or for her students, Teacher Brina. She may look like your ordinary teacher but her journey is one inspiring story to tell.

On her Facebook account, Brina shared that she was diagnosed with Down Syndrome at 9 days old. Doctors told her parents the heartbreaking news that she may not live long. When Brina reached 11 years old, doctors again warned them that she may not finish grade school. But the fighter kid persevered, lived and finished elementary education with honors.

Down syndrome is the most common genetic disorder and cause of lifelong learning disabilities and developmental delays in children, according to the National Down Syndrome Society.

But now, the child has grown into an impressive woman. At 21 years of age, Brina is now an assistant teacher at Pean Integrated School of Parañaque.

Brina Maxino finished college to pursue her dream of being a teacher
Brina Maxino finished college to pursue her dream of being a teacher | Photo Courtesy: Facebook/Brina Maxino

She graduated college with a degree of AB History from CAP College Foundation, Inc. The diligent student also graduated from a 2-year course in Associate in Arts and a 1-year course in general clerical skills.

The inspiring lady seems to be unstoppable as she is also a Special Olympics Global Youth ambassador. Brina travels all over the world to share her story and inspire others to dream. Because of her amazing feat, she made history by becoming the first Filipina ambassador to the Special Olympics. She was invited by no less than US President Barack Obama to the White House.

Brina was invited by US President Barack Obama to the White House
Brina was invited by US President Barack Obama to the White House | Photo Courtesy: Facebook/Brina Maxino

Brina couldn’t be any more thankful for everything she has achieved. She gave wonderful pieces of advice that will hopefully make everyone look at the disorder in a more positive and hopeful light. Teacher Brina said, “To all parents -- please believe in your children with Down Syndrome, just like what my parents did.

To all PWDs like me --- believe in yourselves and pray to God always. You can do it. Just study and work hard.

To everyone --- please respect us and accept us. Please do not call us names like mongoloid, idiot, moron, stupid or retarded. It hurts us. Please be kind to us. Our disability does not mean inability. We can be useful members of society. Cheers to all Persons with Down Syndrome!”

The post has gone viral with over 170,000 reactions and 46,000 shares.

“Never a curse”

Brina’s mother, Alina Maxino, revealed that the most challenging years were when Brina was still very young. As a mother, it pained her to see her beloved daughter being ridiculed and mocked by others.

Brina’s father, Winston Maxino, said, "We thought that there's only one way to eliminate that, that is to show them and the whole world that her disability is actually nothing and that she can even be more than what they could see in her and she could be better than them."

— Sally, The Summit Express

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