Born in Dimiao, a town on the southern coast of the Bohol province, Raymundo Rautraut (35) is the eldest of 15 children. With a big family and parents who did not have stable jobs, Raymundo remembers that every day was a struggle for food. At the early age of 8, he felt a responsibility to help his parents. He collected mature coconut fruits for his parents to sell and ran errands for farmers in exchange for rice. Raymundo was also eager to go to school so over the years he took up jobs as a house helper, a bread delivery boy and a room cleaner to earn money to fund his schooling. He graduated from high school and even did a year of college but then dropped out in his second year to get a job to help his parents and younger siblings to go to school. He went to Manila and worked in a restaurant sending most of his salary to his family.
Raymundo would stay in Manila for five years (2012 to 2017) and then one day a terrible incident happened which would bring his time in Manila to a swift end. It was Raymundo’s birthday and as usual, he was up at 3am to go to his workplace. There was a knock at the door and Raymundo peeked out of the window to see who it was. There was a loud bang and the next thing he knew, he was staring at a puddle of blood on the floor and holding his t-shirt to his face and neck to stop the bleeding. He had been shot in the face by a neighbourhood drug addict who proceeded to steal his phone and some money. Thankfully, he had some relatives who lived nearby and they rushed him to the hospital. He would spend six weeks in hospital followed by another six weeks of recuperation and only then was he well enough to get a flight back to Bohol to continue his recovery at home.
In early 2019, Raymundo was able to obtain a job in a restaurant in Tagbilaran City, Bohol’s capital and he He was so happy to be able to support his family again. Within a year however, the COVID-19 pandemic had broken out and he was out of a job for over one and half years. During this time, Raymundo decided to team up with his parents, Nelia and Alfredo (both 59), to open up an eatery. From his savings, he rented a space near his boarding house. The business operates well and gives an average monthly income of 7,000 pesos ($140).
Raymundo is now back in his former job working in the restaurant and earning 10,000 pesos ($200) a month. His daily routine is to wake up at 3:00 am to help his parents prepare the ingredients before heading to his workplace at 8:00 am. On Sundays, he works full-time in the eatery. Raymundo is keen to make improvements to his family eatery and is applying for a loan for this purpose. He would like to have a 3 tiered glass display counter for the cooked foods.The eatery is along the road and having the said equipment will protect the food containers from dust. Furthermore, a display counter with three levels will allow for most off the dishes to be placed within it thus freeing up space in the eatery to have more dine-in customers.
Raymundo is excited about the prospects for his family eatery and we wish him well. He has proven his tenacity and resilience time and time again and we are glad to support him. He continues to support his siblings with their education; two are now in college and four are in high school.
Louis Levine and Analyn T. Gallibot