Going from being a beggar to a star is normally unlikely. The young Rita Gaviola, however, seems to have been really blessed with luck. Four years ago, in the Philippine city of Lucban, a hard-living 13-year-old lived on the street. Rita spent her days begging, hoping to be able to raise a couple of sous to make up for the poor salary of her scavenger father. At her home, her mother took care of her five younger siblings full time. No one attended school and the miserable life of a poor family seemed destined to remain so forever.
In that same period, in May 2016, she was wandering the streets of the city Topher Quinto Burgos. He, a Filipino photographer, was immediately amazed by Rita's natural beauty. After taking a picture of her and uploading it online, the face of a very young Rita Gaviola started bouncing up and down the net, attracting the curious eyes of hundreds of people across the Philippines. But the most interested seemed to be the various beauty queens who from more or less high podiums tried to do everything to pull Rita out of poverty.
Rita Gaviola: a Cinderella in the real world.
Miss Philippines, Miss World and web influencers have worked like crazy to bring out this beautiful face of the Badjao ethnic minority within the most mainstream platforms. In no time at all, Rita Gaviola became a star. National and international newspapers lined up to interview her, she paraded for famous brands and participated in reality shows and television series. A house large enough to comfortably accommodate eight people was built for her and her family. Her online audience grew to such an extent that she reached America.
An unexpected celebrity who was able to bring to the young Rita Gaviola both an incredible notoriety as well as the tools useful for living in a dignified manner and being able to deepen her education and that of her younger brothers. With over 120,000 followers on Instagram, the girl is still followed around the world, albeit with a more rounded circle in her country of origin. In any case, the story of this Cinderella from the Philippines shows us how sometimes a stroke of luck can change our lives from one moment to the next.