Our team Let Us Build Ourselves is progressing well. Since February 2011 we have been teaching 20 women in our community how to read, write, and calculate. This is the third session we are teaching since we started in 2008. In the first session we taught 30 women, the second 20, and now we teach 20 women. Currently the oldest student is 60 years old, and the youngest is 22. We teach them from Monday to Friday, two hours a day (1-3PM).
These women are mostly widows. They are responsible for their families. Most of them work as cleaners, and others sell some vegetables and fruits in baskets. To date, six of our students have opened their own accounts in banks, and most of them are able to read and understand sign posts, newspapers, and the laws on civil marriage. Our team has made a big impact, especially with our beneficiaries. We receive different testimonials from our students: “I am Mukahigiro Mary, a student here in Let Us Build Ourselves. Now I know how to read Kinyarwanda, I can recognize a letter…It opened my mind. I feel comfortable and fitted in the society.” As a result of our work, sixteen students are now in different teams that work to help them become economically independent.
Some other students have joined our dance troop called Inzovu (Elephants). This troop supports us in fundraising through its performances. 28% of our monthly operating costs are covered by the income from this dance troop. Mukahigiro Mary our current student is a founder of a team called: Abanyamurava (Hardworkers) that is going to start a small project of selling charcoals, and recently her team has got a grant from Global Fund through A.E.E. (African Evangelistic Enterprise). What do you think about our project?
The big challenge we face is that we are not able to pay teachers, because we don’t have enough income. Therefore teachers work as volunteers. Another challenge is that we don’t have enough costumes for our dance troop. We usually rent these costumes, and it is expensive compared to our means.
At the end of this year 2011 we are planning our third graduation. In other words, we have graduation ceremonies this December. All we want is that before graduation, every student will be able to effectively read and write. We also want everyone to be able to calculate, so that they can manage their small businesses. We also want all of them to open their own bank accounts, and send their daughters to school. In addition we are encouraging them to attend local meetings, and to run for office in local elections. Don’t you think that a woman can bring a great change in her family once she is literate? As we usually do a follow up of our students after they graduate, we plan to continue following up these fresh graduates.
Finally we thank you for supporting us in our literacy program among adult women, and we would love to hear from you.
The President of Let Us Buil Ourselves
(Teach 30 Rwandan Women to Read, Write & Calculate (8074)
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