A former substitute teacher who was living in his car was given a $27,000 cheque by a former pupil who organized a fundraiser to assist him.
Jose Villarreal, a substitute teacher in the Fontana Unified School District in Southern California, was given a holiday present.
He, like many others, was struggling financially and had spent decades living in his 1997 Ford Thunderbird LX.
But things became even worse for him last year when schools all over the world went online to prevent the spread of COVID-19. “I couldn’t possibly support my family and extended family in Mexico and rent an apartment here at the same time with the income that I can have,” Villarruel told the news station.
Former student Steven Nava revealed that he was seeing “Mr. V” was more often in a parking lot, living in his car, and he was shattered when he saw how an epidemic had left teachers jobless, so he resolved to assist him.
“Every day about 5 a.m., I’d head out to work,” Steven told the news station and watch him sorting through his belongings in his trunk. I simply felt compelled to take action.”
Many students came to see him to express their best wishes, support, and encouragement.
Villarruel said it came as a great surprise to him, and he’s still trying to process it all.
Steven subsequently said to KCBS,” we don’t thank these teachers enough, and that’s something that we should be doing”.
It is the instructor who assists so many students in developing as individuals.