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Former Balut Vendor, Tricycle Driver Now Owns a Popular Coffee Shop in Cork City, Ireland

Former Pedicab Driver and Street Food Vendor in Tondo Now A Coffee Shop Owner in Ireland

Former Pedicab Driver and Balut Vendor in Tondo Now A Coffee Shop Owner in Ireland photo credits- ABS-CBN NEWS

Manila, Philippines — A story of a former balut vendor and tricycle driver back in the Philippines and now the owner of a coffee shop in Ireland has spread like a wildfire on the social media — and it seems like a lot of people are inspired and impressed of this story.

Former Pedicab Driver and Balut Vendor in Tondo Now A Coffee Shop Owner in Ireland photo credits- ABS-CBN NEWS
Former Pedicab Driver and Balut Vendor in Tondo Now A Coffee Shop Owner in Ireland photo credits- ABS-CBN NEWS

His name is Jeffrey Velasco. He belonged to an underprivileged family in Tondo, Manila.

The hardest part of his life

He considers his life in Tondo, Manila as the hardest part of his life. He said he is a tricycle driver in the morning and a balut vendor in the evening. Despite all these hardships in life, he still worked hard so he could reach his dreams in life.

Cuppacity Coffee in Ireland
Cuppacity Coffee in Ireland

His life in Taiwan

Velasco decided to go to Taiwan as an Overseas Filipino Worker because he thought he would never be successful as a balut vendor and tricycle driver. He was an electronics technician in the said country. He went back to the Philippines after his contract in Taiwan ended. Using his savings in Taiwan, he decided to open a billiards and bar hangout as well as an Internet shop.

His stint in Ireland

Jeffrey Velasco was married to a nurse. They moved to Ireland back in 2006. Initially, he worked as a barista at a coffee shop during mornings. During evenings, however, he worked at a bed and breakfast business.

Cuppacity Coffee - Filipino Owned Coffee Shop in Ireland
Cuppacity Coffee – Filipino Owned Coffee Shop in Ireland

These work experiences became a big part of his training. Later on, he became the owner of a coffee shop — the Cuppacity Coffee & Bagels which is situated in the Cork City in Ireland. It was actually not his original idea to buy a coffee shop. It was his former employer who saw his dedication and potential in the food industry.

As days passed by, his business gained traction. To date, it is now among the most popular hangout place in the area. The business has managed to gain consumers because of their delicious food.

In just two years, Velasco opened another branch in Cork City.

“Ang maipapayo ko sa kanila is kung may pagkakataon, grab all the opportunity, kasi, hindi na ‘yan kakatok pa sa susunod,” said Velasco.

There is no denying that Velasco is indeed an inspiration to a lot of Filipinos including our Overseas Filipino Workers and Migrants.

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Written by Markus Castro

A cat person by day and a writer by night. He loves to travel to his favorite destinations in Southeast Asia.

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