Strangers Raise Over $175k For a Latina Student Who Used Her College Savings Towards Her Mom’s Rent
Photo via GoFundMe
So many of us have parents who have had to overcome impossible obstacles to give us the chance at a better life. The older we get, the more we recognize the amount of sacrifice it took our parents to give us a better future than they have. But sometimes, things don’t go according to plan–like for Alondra Carmona.
18-year-old Alondra Carmona gave her mother her entire college savings when she discovered that they were two months behind on rent.
And Alondra hadn’t been planning to go to just any school, but Barnard–an all-girls Ivy League school in New York City. Barnard had been Alondra’s dream since she was 15-years-old. She worked hard throughout her four years at high school and, luckily, all that hard work paid off. In December, she found out she was accepted, and she felt like all of her dreams had come true.
Barnard had offered to cover $60,000 of her tuition each year, and Alondra had planned on covering the rest of the costs with her own money–which amounted to about $2,000 that Alondra had saved from her high school jobs and internships.
But earlier this month, Alondra was hit with a blow: her mother had secretly been unemployed for the last 3 months and now they were facing eviction.
According to Alondra, she had no clue her mother was having financial problems. Her mother had hid it from her family because she didn’t want to worry them.
“When she told me that, I wanted to cry,” Alondra told local news station KHOU.”I knew I had to accept I couldn’t go to Barnard.”
Without hesitating, Alondra offered up her own personal college savings to help her mom cover their rent. “I knew I wanted to help her,” Alondra said. “I really didn’t think twice about it. I told her I’m going to give you my savings and make a GoFundMe page to see if I can get enough to replace the money in my savings.”
And so she did. Alondra posted a heartfelt GoFundMe page that kindly asked strangers to help chip in to cover her college tuition costs.
Alondra laid out her hopes and dreams on the GoFundMe page, explaining that she hoped to study the STEM field at Barnard and, ultimately, pursue an M.D./PhD in medicine.
“I have worked tirelessly to look for programs and opportunities that my small school could not provide,” she wrote. “All of my college savings will go to paying the rent that we are behind on. As much as I dream of going to Barnard College, it is not looking promising right now. I am turning to this as a last resort because Barnard will not be able to change my financial aid package.”
Within days, Alondra had raised $171,000–far more than her original $10,000 goal.
Alondra, for her part, is blown away by the kindness and generosity that complete strangers have shown her. “I am incredibly thankful and crying right now,” she wrote, shortly after her GoFundMe page took off. “I can’t even describe how grateful I am. I have no words. Everyone is so supportive and loving, thank you from the bottom of my heart.”
But above all, Alondra Carmona is grateful to her mother–the person in her life who gave her everything. “I love my mom so much,” Alondra told KHOU. “She really has done so much for us just coming from El Salvador to give us a better chance at a good education. I’m so grateful to her.”
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